Saturday, November 25, 2017

Israel refuses to respect Gaza ceasefire


By John Space - May 02, 2013
TAGS:
Section: [Main News]
Tags: [ceasefire] [Operation Pillar of Defense] [Israeli army]

Reports of a settler killed near Nablus dominated media coverage of Palestine this week. But another murder committed the same day received far less international attention, perhaps because the victim was Palestinian and the assassin was the Israeli government.

A precision strike by Israeli warplanes killed Haitham al-Mishal in northern Gaza on Tuesday, April 30, in a clear violation of the ceasefire agreement reached between Israel and Hamas at the end of last November's war in Gaza, known as Operation Pillar of Defense. 

This is hardly the first time Israel has broken the ceasefire agreement. A mere two days after the ceasefire was declared, Israeli troops shot and killed a farmer in Gaza during a protest against the 'buffer zone' Israel has established around Gaza's security wall.

The Gaza-based human rights organization Al Mezan condemned the targeted killing of al-Mishal. 

"Israeli rhetoric has attempted to justify these serious measures (such as targeted killing) within the context of security and self-defense; however, targeted killings are in contravention to the ceasefire agreement of 21 November 2012, the ceasefire ending the eight-day Operation codenamed Pillar of Defense," the group said in a statement. "Al Mezan condemns the targeted killing by Israel and the continued violation of the ceasefire agreement; and warns the International community of the potential for increased Israeli aggression against the Gaza Strip. Al Mezan encourages the international community, especially the high contracting parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention, to intervene immediately and halt the Israeli violations against the civilians of Gaza and bring an end to the immunity that Israel continues to enjoy."

Al-Mishan's assassination comes in the context of heightened tensions in Gaza. Since the end of the war in November, Israel has continually broken the ceasefire agreement. As of February, Israel had murdered four people in Gaza since the end of November's war. The assassination of al-Mishal brings the total up to at least five.

Israel continues to break the ceasefire in other ways, as well. As part of the agreement, Israel agreed to loosen restrictions on fisherman in Gaza, but it has recently reinstated the restrictions and attacked fishermen in Gaza, in direct contravention of its own agreements. 

Israel claims that the attacks and breaches of the ceasefire are in response to rockets fired from the Gaza strip. But no injuries have been reported as a result of rocket attacks from Gaza since the end of Pillar of Cloud.

In addition to the five murders committed by Israel since November, at least 91 Gazans have been injured by Israeli attacks. The situation leaves no doubt that Israel is the aggressor, and its conduct is in serious breach of human rights law as well as its own ceasefire agreement. 




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