27 December 2010

The murder of many innocents in Gaza two years ago is remembered

DCI - Defence for Children International provides these words. We share our tears with them and with those many in Gaza who lost their loved ones.

'Operation Cast Lead' - Two years on

Today marks the second anniversary since the start of Israel’s military offensive in the Gaza Strip. Between 27 December 2008 and 18 January 2009, over 1,400 Palestinians were killed, including 352 children.

In the two years since the end of ‘Operation Cast Lead,’ the Israeli authorities have opened approximately 48 criminal investigations of which only four have led to indictments (Human Rights Watch). Out of the four indictments, one soldier was convicted for stealing a credit card and two soldiers were convicted of using a child as a human shield. It has recently been reported that another soldier has now been charged with killing a woman holding a white flag (Haaretz). So far, only the soldier convicted of stealing a credit card has served time in prison. The two soldiers convicted of using a nine-year-old boy as a human shield by making him search for explosives at gunpoint, each received three-month suspended sentences and a demotion in rank.

On 21 September 2010, the UN Committee of Independent Experts released its report into whether the investigations carried out by all parties to the conflict met the relevant international standards. The report found that, on balance, the investigations did not meet international standards.
There is no indication that any investigations were ever opened into those who designed, planned, ordered or oversaw the operation. 

To mark the second anniversary DCI-Palestine is releasing the stories of all 352 children killed during the war. These simple but compelling stories bear witness to those events. 

Photo: Lina Hasan - born 1 September 1999, killed 6 January 2009. 

Operation Cast Lead: Girl killed by tank shells outside al-Fakhoura school after buying candies from the store

On 6 January 2009 at around 3:45pm, Israeli tanks shelled the perimeter of al-Fakhoura school, one of 37 schools operated by UNRWA in Jabalia refugee camp. During Operation Castm Lead, the school was used to shelter displaced civilians whom were trying to escape the fighting, or had been ordered to
leave their areas of residence by the Israeli military, in northern Gaza. UNRWA had provided the Israeli army with the exact GPS coordinates of al-Fakhoura School. The school was also included on a list of 91 provisional shelters that was communicated to the Israeli military before the start of the offensive. The tank shells landed on the road just outside the school, killing 44 people, including 14 children. Lina Hasan (9) was among them.

Wael Baroud (38) was looking for his children among the dead and injured after the explosions outside al-Fakhoura school, when he found Lina Hasan (9). This is was he saw: “I approached the dead bodies and turned them. There were more than a 100 people on the ground. Most of them were dead. I suddenly saw a little girl near Abu Dayer store. It was Lina Hasan. She was on the ground. I ran to her because I saw her moving her mouth. She was opening and closing
her mouth. She was holding candies in her hand. Though she was injured, she was sucking the candies between her lips. Her face was not injured. When I grabbed the back of her head, I was surprised to see that her skull was cut off. After that, she closed her lips and died.”

Case documented by DCI-Palestine on 22 April 2009.

DCI-Palestine documented the deaths of 352 children as a direct result of Israel's military offensive "Operation Cast Lead" in the Gaza Strip between 27 December 2008 and 18 January 2009.

The original image of Lina is linked here


My caption for the image is 'This child is my child'.

Their stories are available here