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IOF Attacks on House in Rafah; Kills Six Including a Child; Al Mezan Condemns this Attack and Calls for International Intervention to End the Israeli Aggression on the Gaza Strip

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19 August 2011 |Reference 67/2011

For Immediate Release 1:30 am   Yesterday, Thursday, 18 August 2011, Israeli Aircraft attacked Palestinian house in the southern Gaza Strip town of Rafah.
As a result, six persons were killed including at two-year-old child.
Among the casualties also was the secretary-general of the Popular Resistance Committees (PRC) and other senior leaders in the group.
Israeli media reported that this attack was carried out by direct orders from Israel’s prime minister.
This attack marks serious escalation in aggression since the Israeli aggression Operation Cast Lead in 2008-2009.
It came as Israeli threats to intensify its extra judicial killings and attacks on the Gaza Strip.
   According to field investigations by Al Mezan Center for Human Rights, at approximately 4:50 pm on Thursday 18 August 2011, Israeli aircraft fired two missiles at a group of Palestinian leaders from the PRC and its military wing (called An-Naser Salah Ad-Din Brigades) as they were in the house of Khalid Hamad Sha’ath.
The house is located opposite Imam Ali mosque in the Abu Baker As-Seddeq Street in Block J in Rafah refugee camp.
As a result, six persons were killed.
Al Mezan identified their names as follows: ·         Kamal ‘Awad An-Nerab, 43, the secretary-general of the PRC; ·         Imad Abdel Kareem Hammad, 40; ·         Imad Ad-Din Na’eem Naser, 46; ·         Khalid Ibrahim Al Masri, 26; ·         Khalid Hammad Sha’ath, 32; and his son ·         Malek Khalid Sha’ath, 2.
All of them were residents of Rafah district.
  The Al Mezan Center for Human Rights condemns the Israeli extra judicial killing.
Al Mezan asserts that this conduct represents a serious escalation of Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip.
Israel officially adopted the attack at the highest level and followed it with mounting threats to conduct other extra judicial killing attacks and to expand its ongoing aggression on the Gaza Strip.
  Al Mezan views the new Israeli attack, its adoption, and its threats to continue this type of breaches of international humanitarian law (IHL) as a declaration by Israel that its disregard to its international law obligations is only expected to continue.
These developments also come under the failure of the international community to uphold its legal obligations under the international law, which will only encourage Israel to commit more grave breaches of IHL; especially as no Israeli commanders or officials are brought to justice for their violation of the international law.
    Al Mezan asserts that this extra judicial killing represent only a new serious breach of international law and is part of a series of other serious Israeli violations committed against Palestinians people and their property in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt).
Extra judicial killings form gross and flagrant violations of the international law, particularly the Fourth Geneva Convention.
International law bans extra judicial, summary, or arbitrary execution whatever the reasons are, but also particularly bans retaliation.
  In the light of the above, the Al Mezan Center for Human Rights calls on the international community particularly the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention, who are obliged under the Convention to respect it in all cases, to promptly intervene to end Israel’s continued violation of international law.
International community is particularly called to provide protection for civilians in the oPt, as the IOF has escalated its attacks that fail to observe IHL rules hurt them.
Al Mezan views the intervention of the international community is a legal and moral obligation as well as an urgent demand particularly in the current situation.
The IOF will abuse the silence of the international community to expand its ongoing aggression and expands it.