Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Palestinian NGOs hand over case of Gazan family killed in their sleep to ICC in The Hague

Funeral of the killed family members of the Al-Louh family in Deir al-Balah, 20 August 2014. (Photo APA)

Four Palestinian human rights organisations delivered a confidential communication to the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague, Fatou Bensouda, on behalf of themselves and Palestinian victims of Israel’s “Protective Edge” operation in the summer of 2014. The communication, which was submitted by Al-Haq, Al-Mezan Center for Human Rights, Aldameer and the Palestinian Center for Human Rights pursuant to Article 15 of the Rome Statute, contains information on crimes jointly documented during Israel’s 2014 offensive against the Gaza Strip.
 “We have become used to Israel killing and injuring Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. The 2014 offensive is the third war on our people in about six years. But nothing could have fully prepared me for the devastating loss of my sons, grandsons and granddaughters in an attack against our family home.” said Bouthaineh Al Louh, a Palestinian 57-year old grieving mother.
“On 20 August 2014 at 04.45am, Israel attacked our home in Deir al Balah whilst my family was fast asleep. My son and two stepsons were killed in the attack, as well as my nine months pregnant daughter-in-law and her three children. Our family will never again be complete, and our house is in ruins. I hope that the ICC can acknowledge the crimes that we endured and punish those that deprived us of our loved ones”.
Speaking from The Hague, Mr. Shawan Jabarin (Al-Haq Director) said that, “We have provided the Office of the Prosecutor with enough information for it to determine that there is a reasonable basis to believe that senior Israeli military and civilian officials committed crimes against humanity and war crimes during the offensive against Gaza. We are confident that the information now at the disposal of the Office of the Prosecutor is sufficient to open an investigation, and urge her to act quickly to begin a formal investigation.”
 Shawan Jabarin of Al-Haq hans over the files to the ICC prosecotor Fatou Bensouda (Photo Al-Haq)

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