UN report says Israeli strikes may have violated laws of war


The UN verified that these attacks resulted in at least 218 fatalities and the destruction of civilian structures…reports Asian Lite News

The UN Human Rights Office has reported that Israeli air strikes in Gaza may have systematically violated laws of war, which mandate the protection of civilians and civilian infrastructure.

This conclusion stems from a report examining six significant attacks on residential buildings, a school, refugee camps, and a market between October 9 and December 2 of the previous year.

The UN verified that these attacks resulted in at least 218 fatalities and the destruction of civilian structures, according to BBC report.

Israel’s mission in Geneva rejected these findings, labeling them as “factually, legally, and methodologically flawed”, BBC reported.

They defended the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), asserting that their operations in Gaza adhered to international law and accused Hamas of unlawfully embedding itself within civilian populations.

The Israeli military initiated its campaign to dismantle the Palestinian armed group following an unprecedented assault on southern Israel on October 7, which resulted in approximately 1,200 deaths, mostly civilians, and 251 hostages being taken.

Since then, the Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza has reported over 37,390 deaths, although these figures do not distinguish between civilians and combatants.

By the end of April, the ministry had identified 14,680 children, women, and elderly among the dead.

The report from the UN Human Rights Office, released on Wednesday, scrutinised six specific air strikes where Israel is suspected of breaching fundamental war principles.

 These strikes involved the use of air-dropped munitions, specifically GBU-31 (2,000lb/907kg), GBU-32 (1,000lb/453kg), and GBU-39 (250lb/110kg).

(240514) — GAZA, May 14, 2024 (Xinhua) — Smoke rises following Israeli strikes in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah, on May 14, 2024. Israeli tanks on Tuesday marched towards the center of Rafah, the southernmost city in the Gaza Strip, as tens of thousands of residents fled to evade an Israeli ground offensive, a local source reported. (Photo by Khaled Omar/Xinhua)

Israel to import 92,000 foreign workers

Seeking to address a labour shortage, Israeli officials approved a quota of 92,000 foreign workers to fill jobs in agriculture, industry, hotels and restaurants, the Prime Minister’s Office announced on Tuesday. This marks the first time Israel has authorized foreign workers for the restaurant industry.

Seventy percent of the quota is specifically set aside for agricultural laborers. Israeli agriculture is facing staggering losses in production and manpower. Before October 7, Israel had 29,900 foreigners, mostly Thais, working in farms, orchards, greenhouses and packing plants.

Israeli workers who might have filled the gaps have been called up for military reserve duty while Palestinian laborers are currently banned as security risks. Many growing areas are within two kilometers of the Lebanese border where farmers have not been able to freely access fields and orchards.

“Despite the challenges of the war, the packing house works around the clock, with the aim of providing fresh Israeli produce continuously, while dealing with the directives of the Home Front Command,” said Asaf Keret, CEO of Beresheet, a fruit-packing business jointly run by several kibbutzim in the Upper Galilee and Golan Heights.

Keret was addressing a delegation of fruit growers and agricultural officials touring Beresheet’s orchards. He called on the government to boost agriculture with further measures, such as grants for planting, raising lang quotas, and other incentives.

“The fruit growers are at the height of the picking season and are faced with picking under the fire of Hezbollah, and we are prepared to market the produce of the farmers of the Galilee and the Golan to the marketing chains and wholesale companies. Thanks to our dedicated farmers and workers, I am sure that we will be able to supply the produce to the residents of the State of Israel,” Keret said.

The remaining foreign workers will fill gaps in industry, and hotels, with 2,000 to work for the first time in restaurants.

Since October 7, Hezbollah rocket barrages and drone attacks have killed 10 civilians and 15 soldiers. Leaders of the Iran-backed terror group have said they will continue the attacks to prevent thousands of residents of northern Israel from returning to their homes.

Israeli officials have been calling for Hezbollah to be disarmed and removed from Southern Lebanon in accordance with UN Security Council resolution 1701, which ended the 2006 Second Lebanon War. (ANI/TPS)

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