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Israel using starvation as a weapon of war, HRW says

In a new report, the prominent human rights group has accused Israel of starving civilians in Gaza “as a method of warfare”, a strategy that amounts to a war crime.

“For over two months, Israel has been depriving Gaza’s population of food and water, a policy spurred on or endorsed by high-ranking Israeli officials and reflecting an intent to starve civilians as a method of warfare,” said Omar Shakir, Israel and Palestine director at Human Rights Watch.

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The Israeli army is deliberately blocking the delivery of water, food and fuel, while willfully blocking humanitarian assistance and depriving the civilian population of objects indispensable to their survival. According to international law, such deprivation is a war crime, the report says.

Criminal intent does not require the attacker’s admission but can also be inferred from the totality of the circumstances of the military campaign, it adds.


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