Monday, April 15, 2024

Israeli soldiers shoot and kill two unarmed Palestinian men in Gaza: Video | Israel War on Gaza News

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Advocacy group condemns ‘heinous war crime’, and says said Israel appears to ‘kill Palestinians on a whim’.

Israeli soldiers shot dead two unarmed Palestinian men at close range in Gaza, their bodies buried in sand and rubbish by an army bulldozer, exclusive broadcast footage obtained by Al Jazeera has shown.

The men repeatedly waved what appeared to be white fabric, in a sign of surrender and to show they did not pose a threat.

They were near the Nabulsi Roundabout, southwest of Gaza City, and were trying to return to their homes in the north of the Strip via al-Rashid Street, the only possible route, an Al Jazeera correspondent said. This is where they encountered the Israeli soldiers.

The airing of the video comes days after the United Nations Security Council passed a resolution demanding an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and amid growing calls for Israel to halt its nearly six-month assault on the besieged enclave that has killed tens of thousands of Palestinians and prompted warnings of imminent famine.

The footage shows one man approaching the troops, holding up a white cloth, while the other turned around but all the while raising a piece of white fabric.

The man who turned around is seen being pursued by an armoured vehicle. Soldiers open fire on him and the footage shows him collapsing in the sand.

A bulldozer is used to bury two bodies, including that of the first man who had walked towards the soldiers, the video shows.

The Israeli army told Al Jazeera on Thursday that “a thorough and professional examination is required in order to asses the details of the incident”, adding that it had transferred its report “to the relevant professional bodies for review”.

Hamas condemned the killings, saying it was “further evidence of the scale of fascism and criminality that governs Zionist behaviour, in the context of the brutal war of extermination against our people in the Gaza Strip”.

It also called on the International Criminal Court to take “necessary measures” to hold Israel accountable for “the crimes they commit against children and defenceless civilians”.

The Palestinian armed group says any ceasefire agreement must include the right of Palestinians to return to their homes safely without being shot at by Israeli troops.

‘Heinous war crime’

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a civil rights and advocacy group based in the United States, called for a United Nations investigation into the “heinous war crime”, and said Israel appears to “kill Palestinians on a whim” and then treats the bodies of its victims “like trash”.

“This genocide must be stopped, not excused or supported with weapons [and] rhetoric,” CAIR said.

Professor Richard Falk, a former UN special rapporteur on human rights in Palestine, said the shootings were “vivid confirmation of continuing Israeli atrocities”.

They also highlighted the “unambiguous character of Israeli atrocities that are being carried out on a daily basis”, Falk told Al Jazeera.

“The eyes and ears of the world have been assaulted in real-time by this form of genocidal behaviour,” Falk said, describing the lack of condemnation from Western nations as a “shameful moment”.

The UN Security Council this week adopted a resolution demanding an immediate ceasefire between Israel and Hamas and the release of captives being held in Gaza.

Falk said Israel is unconcerned with upholding international humanitarian law and is refusing to alter its behaviour in Gaza despite the recent resolution.

At least 32,490 Palestinians have been killed and 74,889 wounded in Israeli attacks on Gaza since October 7, according to Gaza’s Ministry of Health.

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