War crimes committed by all parties in Israel-Hamas war: UN Rights chief | World News - Hindustan Times
close_game
close_game

War crimes committed by all parties in Israel-Hamas war: UN Rights chief

Reuters |
Feb 29, 2024 05:20 PM IST

Hamas gunmen killed 1,200 people and captured 253 hostages in an attack on Israel on Oct. 7, according to Israeli tallies.

UN human rights chief Volker Turk on Thursday said war crimes had been committed by all parties in the conflict between Israel and Hamas, calling for them to be investigated and for those responsible to be held accountable.

Smoke billows from the site of an Israeli air strike on the outskirts of the southern Lebanese village (AFP)
Smoke billows from the site of an Israeli air strike on the outskirts of the southern Lebanese village (AFP)

"Clear violations of international human rights and humanitarian laws, including war crimes and possibly other crimes under international law, have been committed by all parties," Turk told the U.N. Human Rights Council in Geneva.

Unlock exclusive access to the story of India's general elections, only on the HT App. Download Now!

"It is time - well past time - for peace, investigation and accountability."

Hamas gunmen killed 1,200 people and captured 253 hostages in an attack on Israel on Oct. 7, according to Israeli tallies.

The attack sparked an Israeli offensive in Hamas-run Gaza, which it says is intended to rescue the remaining hostages and eradicate Hamas. Health authorities in Gaza say more than 30,000 people have been confirmed killed during the offensive.

Turk, who was presenting a report on the human rights situation in Gaza and in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, said his office had recorded "many incidents that may amount to war crimes by Israeli forces". He added there were also indications that Israeli forces have engaged in "indiscriminate or disproportionate targeting" in violation of international law.

Turk said Palestinian armed groups launching indiscriminate projectiles across southern Israel and the holding of hostages also violated international humanitarian law.

Israel says it is doing all it can to minimise harm to civilians.

In a speech that drew applause by many attendees at the U.N. Human Rights Council, Palestinian Ambassador Ibrahim Khraishi said: "We condemned what happened on Oct. 7 and we do so firmly, but nobody is really is condemning the fact that women, children and the elderly being killed."

Elan Tiv, the daughter of former hostage Aviva Siegel who attended Turk's speech along with her mother, said those who applauded the Palestinian intervention "should be ashamed" of themselves.

"You shouldn't be able to sleep at night, because there are kids on both sides that are being killed," said Tiv, whose father Keith remains captive in Gaza.

Turk added that a ground offensive in the southern border town of Rafah, where some 1.5 million people are estimated to be crammed after fleeing their homes further north to escape Israel's offensive, would incur massive loss of life.

He said such an assault would increase the risk of atrocity crimes, spur more displacement and "sign a death warrant for any hope of effective humanitarian aid." (Reporting by Gabrielle Tétrault-Farber; Editing by Sharon Singleton)

Discover the complete story of India's general elections on our exclusive Elections Product! Access all the content absolutely free on the HT App. Download now!

Get Latest World News along with Latest News from India at Hindustan Times.
SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Share this article
SHARE
Story Saved
Live Score
OPEN APP
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Saturday, April 13, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On