An Israeli court yesterday ruled against a Palestinian from Gaza whose three daughters were killed by the Israeli army during its 2008 war on the Strip, denying Israel’s responsibility for their deaths.
Izzeldin Abuelaish, a 63-year-old doctor from Jabalia in the north of the Gaza Strip, lost three daughters and a niece during Israel’s 2008-2009 war on the besieged enclave. His story was made famous after he discovered his children had been killed while speaking to an Israeli TV channel, with his suffering broadcast live across the country and later shared widely around the world.
Yet Israel’s Beersheba District Court yesterday ruled that Israel bore no responsibility for the deaths of the four girls, instead blaming “terror groups [for] fighting from within a civilian population and storing weapons in the building where they died,” the Times of Israel reported.
Israeli Justice Shlomo Friedlander said in yesterday’s ruling that Israeli shells hit Abuelaish’s home because “figures on the roof were suspected of acting as lookouts for terror groups and directing fire at IDF forces”.
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Abuelaish’s lawsuit claimed that there was no fighting in the area at the time of the attack on his home, meaning there was no military rationale for it being targeted. His legal team claimed Israel’s shelling was, therefore, a war crime.
Abuelaish’s daughters – 13-year-old Bessan, 15-year-old Mayar, and 20-year-old Aya – as well as his 14-year-old niece Noor, were among 1,390 Palestinians killed by Israeli forces during Israel’s 22-day war, dubbed “Operation Cast Lead”. Israeli human rights organization B’Tselem estimates that more than half of those killed were civilians.
(MEMO, PC, Social Media)