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UN report: Israeli authorities committed crimes against humanity in Gaza
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The UN Independent International Commission of Inquiry found Israeli authorities responsible for a range of war crimes, including starvation as a method of warfare, murder, intentionally directing attacks against civilians and civilian objects, forcible transfer, sexual violence, torture, inhuman or cruel treatment, arbitrary detention, and outrages upon personal dignity.

The commission also found that crimes against humanity, such as extermination, gender persecution targeting Palestinian men and boys, murder, forcible transfer, and torture, were committed. The extensive civilian casualties and widespread destruction of civilian objects and infrastructure in Gaza were the result of a strategy undertaken with the intent to cause maximum damage, disregarding the principles of distinction, proportionality, and adequate precautions.

The report also criticized the evacuation orders issued by Israel, calling them "insufficient, unclear, and conflicting," and did not provide adequate time for safe evacuations. It further noted that the evacuation routes and areas designated as safe were consistently attacked by Israeli forces.

The commission also accused Israel of imposing a "total siege," which amounts to collective punishment against the civilian population. It stressed that the siege has disproportionately impacted pregnant women and persons with disabilities, leading to preventable child deaths from starvation, including newborns.

In the West Bank, the commission found that Israel committed acts of sexual violence, torture, inhuman or cruel treatment, and outrages upon personal dignity. It also determined that the Israeli government and military permitted, fostered, and instigated a pattern of settler aggression directed against Palestinian communities.

The commission urged Israel to take immediate action, including implementing a cease-fire, ending the blockade of Gaza, ensuring the delivery of humanitarian supplies, and ceasing attacks on civilians and infrastructure. It also called on Tel Aviv to comply fully with its legal obligations set forth in the International Court of Justice orders and allow the commission access to Gaza to conduct investigations.

The commission's report will be presented to the Human Rights Council’s 56th session on June 19 in Geneva. The report is based on interviews with victims and witnesses conducted remotely and during a mission to Türkiye and Egypt, with thousands of open-source items verified through advanced forensic analysis, hundreds of submissions, satellite imagery, and forensic medical reports. The commission noted that Israel obstructed its investigations and prevented its access to Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory. (ILKHA)

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