May 21, 2024

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The United States says Israel may have violated international law with US weapons in Gaza

The United States says Israel may have violated international law with US weapons in Gaza

  • By Tom Pittman, State Department correspondent
  • BBC News

Image source, Getty Images

Comment on the photo, The United States has become increasingly concerned about increasing civilian deaths in Gaza.

The United States says Israel may have used US-supplied weapons in violation of international humanitarian law in some cases during the war in Gaza.

The State Department says it is “reasonable to assess” that the weapons provided by the United States were used in ways that are “contrary” to Israel’s obligations.

But she added that the US government did not have “complete information” in its assessment.

The report was submitted to Congress on Friday after a delay.

The review ordered by the White House looked at how the country, along with six other countries involved in the conflict, had used US-supplied weapons since the beginning of last year.

While the report was a clear rebuke of some Israeli operations in Gaza, it stopped short of conclusively saying that the IDF campaign had violated international law.

He added that Israel had to face an “exceptional military challenge” in its fight against Hamas in Gaza.

It added that the assurances it received from Israel regarding commitment to the legal use of US weapons were “credible and reliable” and therefore arms shipments could continue.

But she said that given Israel’s heavy reliance on American-made weapons, they were likely used “in situations inconsistent with international humanitarian law.” [international humanitarian law] Commitments or established best practices to mitigate harm to civilians.”

He added that “Israel has the knowledge, experience and tools to implement best practices to mitigate harm to civilians in its military operations,” but “the results on the ground, including high levels of civilian casualties, raise fundamental questions about whether the IDF is using them effectively in “All cases.”

The report said that the United Nations and humanitarian organizations described Israeli efforts to mitigate civilian harm as “inconsistent, ineffective and inadequate.”

The State Department found that Israel did not fully cooperate with US efforts to increase humanitarian aid to Gaza in the early months of the conflict. But she said that situation has changed.

“We do not currently believe that the Israeli government is prohibiting or restricting the transfer or delivery of US humanitarian assistance,” the report said.

One of the report’s contributors, David Satterfield, a former US ambassador to Turkey, told the BBC that the report was the first of its kind and that the US would continue to keep Israeli actions “under review”.

He added: “This is a conflict unlike any conflict the world has witnessed.” “We tried to take into account all of these factors to arrive at a very frank, but also credible, verdict.”

Israeli forces took control of the Rafah crossing with Egypt and closed it at the beginning of their operation, while the United Nations said that the arrival of its employees and trucks to the reopened Kerem Shalom crossing with Israel is extremely dangerous.

Israel launched a military campaign in Gaza to destroy Hamas in response to the group’s attack on southern Israel on October 7, during which some 1,200 people were killed and 252 others were taken hostage. More than 34,900 people have been killed in Gaza since then, according to the Hamas-run Health Ministry in the Strip.