Human Rights Watch: Israeli Attacks May Amount to War Crimes
The organization stressed that Israeli authorities did not present evidence to justify its airstrikes on commercial and residential towers.
The repercussions of the latest round of Israeli crimes are still unfolding.
Human Rights Watch published a report on Monday, announcing that the Israeli airstrikes that destroyed four high-rise buildings in Gaza during May 2021 “apparently violated the laws of war and may amount to war crimes.”
The strikes also damaged nearby buildings, displacing dozens of families, and closing a large number of businesses that provided livelihoods for many people.
Between May 11 and 15, Israeli forces attacked the Hanadi, Al-Jawhara, Al-Shorouk, and Al-Jalaa towers in the densely populated Al-Rimal neighborhood.
The IDF warned the occupants prior to the attacks, allowing them to evacuate.
Three buildings were immediately flattened, while the fourth building, Al Jawhara, was badly damaged and is due to be demolished. The Israeli authorities argued that Palestinian resistance factions used the towers for military purposes, but have not provided any evidence to support these claims.
Richard Weir, crisis and conflict researcher at Human Rights Watch described the Israeli strikes as unlawful, stressing the “serious, lasting harm” it caused for “countless Palestinians who lived, worked, shopped, or benefitted from businesses based there.”
He added that the “Israeli military should publicly produce the evidence that it says it relied on to carry out these attacks.”
The United Nations indicated that the Israeli attacks killed 260 people in Gaza, at least 129 of them civilians, including 66 children.
The local authorities declared that 2,400 housing units have become uninhabitable, while more than 50,000 units have been damaged and more than 2,000 industrial, commercial and service facilities have been destroyed or partially damaged.