BLOG Hyman on possible ICJ ruling: No power on Earth will prevent Israel from protecting its citizens

Conflict between Israel and Hamas - 230th day

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Camp where displaced Palestinians are located: Detail from Rafah, Photo: Reuters
Camp where displaced Palestinians are located: Detail from Rafah, Photo: Reuters
Disclaimer: The translations are mostly done through AI translator and might not be 100% accurate.
Ažurirano: 23.05.2024. 21:47h
15: 26h

More than 35.800 Palestinians have been killed and 80.011 wounded in Israel's military offensive on Gaza since October 7, the Gaza health ministry said.

In the last 24 hours, about 91 Palestinians were killed and 21 were injured, the ministry added, according to Reuters.

15: 00h

A United Nations expert has called on Israel to investigate multiple allegations of cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment of Palestinian detainees following the October 7 attack by Hamas, Reuters reports.

The United Nations Special Rapporteur on torture, Alice Jill Edwards, said in a statement that she had received allegations of people being beaten, blindfolded and handcuffed in cells for long periods.

There was no immediate reaction from the Israeli government or military. The army said it was acting in accordance with Israeli and international law and that those it arrested had access to food, water, medicine and proper clothing, according to Reuters.

The UN special rapporteur said she had received reports that some detainees were deprived of sleep, threatened with physical and sexual violence, insulted and subjected to humiliating acts, including being "photographed and filmed in humiliating poses".

"I am particularly concerned that this new pattern of violations, coupled with the absence of accountability and transparency, creates an enabling environment for further abusive and degrading treatment of Palestinians," Edwards said.

"The Israeli authorities must promptly, impartially, effectively and transparently investigate all complaints and reports of torture or ill-treatment. Those responsible at all levels, including commanders, must be held accountable, while victims have the right to reparation and compensation.

14: 13h

Israel will not be deterred from waging war against Hamas, an Israeli government spokesman said ahead of a decision by the International Court of Justice on South Africa's request for an order to halt military operations in the Gaza Strip, Reuters reports.

"No power on Earth will prevent Israel from protecting its citizens and going after Hamas in Gaza," spokesman Avi Hyman told reporters when asked whether Israel would comply with a possible International Court of Justice ruling against it on Friday.

13: 52h

The request of the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court to issue an arrest warrant for the Israeli prime minister is "unacceptable" and cannot be implemented in Hungary, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán's chief of staff said, reports Reuters.

Gergelj Guljaš said at the briefing that, although Hungary has ratified the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC), it "has never been part of Hungarian law", which means that none of the court's measures can be enforced inside Hungary.

International Criminal Court prosecutor Karim Khan said Monday that he has sought arrest warrants for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, his defense chief and three Hamas leaders for alleged war crimes. Representatives of both sides condemned Khan's decision.

"This decision... is not a legal, but a political decision, it is unacceptable and discredits the International Criminal Court," Guljaš said.

"It is wrong to use the court as a political tool and we should not forget what led to what is happening in Gaza, which is a ruthless, dishonest and vile terrorist attack on Israel," he said.

All 27 countries of the European Union are members of the ICC, and senior EU diplomat Josep Borelj noted that they are "obliged to implement the court's decisions." However, Khan's move exposed political differences between European powers over the conflict. Orban is a longtime Netanyahu ally and has said Israel has the right to defend itself.

12: 06h

According to US officials, humanitarian aid has started entering Gaza through a port built by the US.

"Aid is flowing," national security adviser Jake Sullivan said yesterday at the White House. "It doesn't flow at a speed that any of us would be happy with, because we always want more".

Navy Vice Admiral Brad Cooper said the United States hopes to deliver about 500 tons of aid daily through the pier, or about 90 trucks a day, CNN reported.

The aid comes as much of Gaza is reportedly on the brink of starvation. Some officials in charge of providing humanitarian aid say that hunger has taken hold in some locations.

Aid arrived at the wharf last Sunday and was loaded onto trucks, but the truck convoy was intercepted by a crowd of people and most of the cargo was carried away. One man was killed in the incident.

Aid organizations are now coordinating safe routes for convoys to avoid any deadly incidents.

Meanwhile, Israeli tanks advanced toward Rafah in southern Gaza on Wednesday evening, according to Reuters.

The military operation was carried out with a heavy bombardment of Rafah, which forced hundreds of thousands of people to flee for cover.

"There was no cessation of Israeli fire throughout the night, from drones, helicopters, warplanes and tanks," one resident of Rafah told Reuters. "The tanks made a limited advance to the southeast, still limited, but advanced under heavy fire all night".

Israel reiterates that it has no option but to attack sites in Gaza where it believes Hamas members are hiding, despite Palestinians taking refuge there.

Almost half of Gaza's 2,3 million residents have taken refuge in Rafah until recently. Since Israel began its military operation in Rafah, some 800.000 have fled again.

The war between Israel and Hamas began in October, when Hamas launched a surprise attack in southern Israel that killed 1.200 people and took 250 hostages. In Israel's response to that attack, about 35.000 Palestinians were killed, according to Hamas' Gaza health ministry.

(Voice of America)

10: 58h

Israeli forces killed 35 Palestinians in air and ground bombardments across the Gaza Strip on Thursday and engaged in close combat with Hamas-led militants in areas of the southern city of Rafah, health officials and Hamas media said.

Israeli tanks advanced in southeastern Rafah, headed toward the western part of Jibna town and continued to operate in three eastern suburbs, residents said.

"The occupation (Israeli forces) is trying to move further west, they are on the edge of Jibna, which is densely populated. They haven't invaded yet," said one resident, asking not to be named.

"We hear explosions and see black smoke rising from areas where the army invaded. It was another very difficult night," he told Reuters via a chat app.

Simultaneous Israeli attacks on Gaza's northern and southern edges this month sparked a fresh exodus of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their homes and cut off major access routes for aid, increasing the risk of starvation.

Israel says it has no choice but to attack Rafah to root out the last battalions of Hamas fighters it believes are hiding there.

His troops have been slowly moving towards the eastern suburbs of Rafah since the beginning of the month.

"Troops are currently acting on information about terrorist targets in the 'Brazil' and 'Shabura' areas, making every effort to prevent harm to civilians even after the civilian population in the area has been evacuated," the Israeli military said.

Palestinian residents said there was no incursion into Shabur in the center of Rafah.

"Troops of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) located a rocket launcher ready to fire on IDF troops. Furthermore, troops located and dismantled numerous terrorist tunnels and launchers in the area and eliminated several terrorists during close encounters," the Israeli statement added. army.

UNRVA, the main United Nations agency in Gaza, estimated on Monday that more than 800.000 people have fled Rafah since Israel began shelling the city in early May, despite international pleas for restraint.

In parallel, Israeli forces stepped up a ground offensive in Jabalia, where the army flattened several residential areas and attacked the nearby town of Beit Hanun, areas where Israel announced major operations months ago.

Israel says it had to return to prevent Hamas from regrouping there. The Israeli military said in a statement that forces began conducting targeted strikes in Beit Hanun "to eliminate terrorists, locate and strike terrorist infrastructure, below and above ground."

The military said three soldiers were killed in Wednesday's fighting, bringing the number of soldiers killed since the incursion into Gaza began on October 20 to 286.

Israel launched its assault on Gaza following a Hamas attack on southern Israeli communities on October 7 in which fighters killed 1.200 people and took more than 250 hostages. Since then, Israel's assault on Gaza has killed more than 35.000 people and buried thousands more under the rubble, according to Gaza health authorities.

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