Israel's raids on Gaza Strip a "war crime": Amnesty
Mon Oct 13, 5:56 PM ET  Add Mideast


LONDON (AFP) - Human rights group Amnesty International condemned
Israeli raids at the weekend on the southern Gaza Strip (news - web
sites) town of Rafah that killed eight Palestinians, describing the
operation as a "war crime".

"The repeated practice by the Israeli army of deliberate and wanton
destruction of homes and civilian property is a grave violation of
international human rights and humanitarian law... and constitutes a
war crime," Amnesty said in a written statement issued in London.

"Amnesty International calls on the Israeli authorities to put an
immediate end to the practice of destroying Palestinian homes and
other properties, and of using excessive, disproportionate and
reckless force against unarmed Palestinians... which frequently
result in the killing and injuring of unarmed civilians, including
children."

Amnesty also urged Palestinian armed groups to "immediately halt"
deliberate killings of Israeli civilians.

Eight Palestinians were killed and about 80 injured during the
operation launched on Rafah Thursday night which Israel says was
aimed at destroying tunnels used to smuggle in weapons from across
the border with Egypt.

Around 1,500 people were also left homeless in Rafah refugee camp,
the UN agency for Palestinian refugees has said.