Sat 13-April-2024

New testimonies regarding robberies by IOF around Al-Shifa Medical Complex

Monday 1-April-2024

GAZA, (PIC)

The Euro-Med for Human Rights said that it has received new testimonies regarding the Israeli occupation forces (IOF) carrying out extensive theft and robberies of citizens and their homes, along with other crimes that have been ongoing for the second week surrounding the Al-Shifa Medical Complex in Gaza.

The Euro-Med affirmed in a statement on Sunday that it documented several crimes committed by the occupation forces during a wide military attack on the Al-Shifa Medical Complex and its environs west of Gaza City since March 18th, including killings, extrajudicial executions, unlawful arrests, as well as looting operations of money and property, including valuable possessions of residents and their homes when forcibly displaced or during arson and other attacks.

The Euro-Med highlighted that the Israeli army in Gaza turns a blind eye to – and sometimes encourages – its forces looting valuable possessions and money from residents and homes without holding them accountable for those violations, often done without official documentation.

It further documented the Israeli army’s continued looting of gold jewelry and money, either from the homes they raided or from citizens when forcing them to evacuate to the southern Gaza Strip, where they were forced to leave their bags and all their belongings, which were later seized by soldiers.

The Euro-Med previously documented systematic thefts since the Israeli army began ground military operations inside the Gaza Strip on October 27th, where such operations have been systematically carried out during the invasion of residential areas, house raids, and arbitrary arrests of civilians.

The Monitor confirmed that many of the homes that were looted and robbed were either burned or bombed as part of a collective punishment approach aimed at revenge.

Dr. Yahya Khalil Dib Al-Kayali, 59, told the Euro-Med team, “During the Israeli army’s raid on the house where we were located west of Gaza, they thoroughly searched the house. We had bags containing money for us and others, deposits exceeding $100,000, there were also jewelry and gold belonging to my son’s wife, who is a new bride, and gold belonging to other women from the Al-Afranji family who were with us, and the value of all that exceeds $200,000. They took laptops and destroyed them with their feet, taking everything. My wife tried to take the bags but the soldiers prevented her. When I told the officer about the large amount of money… he laughed and said it would be distributed among the soldiers.”

He added, “The army forces raided the house we were in at dawn amidst heavy gunfire. I informed them that we were civilians, spoke to them in English, and (the males) were asked to strip completely except for the boxer shorts, and we were taken to the bathroom and detained there, and they took my son Amer, 30 years old, to a neighboring room and subjected him to interrogation and torture, and I heard his screams, as they asked him for information and he told them that he came from Germany and knew nothing, then they summoned me for interrogation and threatened to kill me, and they practiced verbal violence and the atmosphere was cold. Then they asked me to go down and go to the Bessiso family’s house to call them and get them out, so I went out naked, and they threatened to shoot me if I moved, so I approached them and told them to raise their hands. The soldier was standing on the balcony, so they came out with a blind man and another in a wheelchair, but the soldier insisted on undressing and asked me to bring them to the house, and they took the women to a place in the house, then used them as human shields in front of them during an exchange of fire with gunmen.”

The Euro-Med pointed to video clips published by Israeli soldiers on social media platforms documenting their deliberate destruction of civilians’ homes in the Gaza Strip, burning them, or painting racist or Jewish slogans on the walls, in addition to boasting about seizing money and valuable possessions.

The Euro-Med for Human Rights called for a comprehensive and impartial international investigation into the serious violations against the residents of the Gaza Strip and their property by the Israeli army forces, which constitute war crimes in themselves, causing serious damage and harm to civilians and their livelihoods without any legal, justifiable, or military necessity, calling for measures to ensure legal accountability and prosecution.

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