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ICHR: Israel pursues systematic extermination of entire Palestinian families

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Palestinian mourners in the besieged Gaza Strip pray for 10 members of the Abu Hatab family -- eight children and two women -- killed by the Israeli regime when their home was bombed during the 11-day war on the impoverished enclave in May 2021.

The Palestinian Independent Commission for Human Rights (ICHR) says Israel pursues “systematic and deliberate extermination of entire Palestinian families.”

The rights group made the remarks in a fact sheet issued on Monday, stressing that such brutal extermination by the Israeli regime is carried out based on a “pattern,” the Palestinian Information Center reported.

Israel’s war machine breathed raging fire on the besieged Gaza Strip recently, killing hundreds of people.

Throughout the 11-day onslaught, from May 10 to 21, Israeli bombardment killed at least 254 Palestinians, including 66 children.

“During the last aggression and over the course of 11 continuous days, the Israeli occupation army bombed dozens of homes and housing units directly and deliberately and destroyed them over the heads of their residents, which exterminated entire families and wiped them off the civil registry system,” ICHR said in its fact sheet.

The latest escalation was triggered by the Israeli regime that forced Palestinian families to abandon their homes in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in the occupied East Jerusalem al-Quds, followed by a violent onslaught on worshipers at the sacred al-Aqsa Mosque.

After Gaza-based resistance groups retaliated, the regime started conducting strikes against civilian areas in the blockaded territory, targeting high-rise residential buildings and media offices.

“The Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor said on May 20, 2021 that it had documented 31 incidents of direct bombardment that targeted extended families — including 21 incidents in which homes were bombed over the heads of their residents, two incidents of targeting gatherings, two incident of targeting cars, and two incidents of bombing farms,” ICHR further said in its statement.

The regime’s atrocities during the 11 days of blood and fire sparked anger and outrage across the world, with massive rallies organized to condemn the blatant aggression.

Further citing the Geneva-based monitor, ICHR documented cases, among others, of Israeli strikes that killed “a man with his wife and his girl child, and mothers with their children, and brothers with their children. There are also seven mothers who were killed along with four or three of their children.”

The Palestinian rights group also cited Amnesty International as saying that “there is a horrific pattern emerging of Israel launching airstrikes in Gaza targeting residential buildings and family homes – in some cases entire families were buried beneath the rubble when the buildings they lived in collapsed.”

The ICHR also called on the International Criminal Court (ICC) to launch a criminal investigation into the war crimes and the crimes against humanity that had been committed by Israeli forces in Gaza.

It also urged authorities at The Hague-based tribunal to investigate Israel’s apartheid and persecution crimes and the crimes against humanity that the Palestinians are still exposed to in the occupied Palestinian territories and inside Israel – known as the 1948 occupied lands.

An Egyptian-brokered truce that came into force in the wee hours of May 21 finally ended the apartheid regime’s war.

The ceasefire came after the Gaza-based resistance movements, most notably Hamas, fired more than 4,000 rockets into the occupied territories, some reaching as far as Tel Aviv and even Haifa and Nazareth to the north, in response to the Israeli bloodshed.

The coastal sliver, home to some two million people, has been under an Israeli-imposed crippling siege since June 2007, which has caused a decline in the living standards as well as unprecedented levels of unemployment and unrelenting poverty there.

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