Saturday, February 07, 2009

Spanish court to probe Israeli war crimes in 2002

PARIS, (PIC)-- The international federation for human rights, the human rights association in Spain and the Palestinian center for human rights hailed the decision taken by the examining magistrate in the central Spanish court on the 29th of January which confirms the court's eligibility to investigate a complaint about war crimes committed by Israel in the Gaza Strip in 2002.

The crimes date back to July 22, 2002 when an Israeli warplane dropped a one-ton bomb on a densely populated area in the Gaza city killing a Hamas leader and 14 Palestinian citizens.

In a statement received by the PIC, the three organizations said that the investigation targets seven Israeli security and military officials, namely, Benjamin Ben Eliezer, Dan Halutz, Doron Almog, Giora Eiland, Michael Herzog, Moshe Ya'alon and Abraham Dichter.

According to the statement, in January 2006, the Israeli high court had said that the Israeli bombing was proportionate to the military objective, which was the assassination of the Hamas leader.

Six Palestinian survivors of the bombing filed on June 24, 2008 a complaint in Spain with the assistance of the Palestinian center for human rights, based on the doctrine of international jurisdiction.

The doctrine allows prosecution in Spain of crimes against humanity or crimes such as terrorism or genocide, even if they are committed in another country.

Suhair Belhasen, the head of the international federation, said that the decision is an important step in the struggle against impunity in respect of the crimes committed by the IOF troops in Gaza.

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