*** ----> UN denounces Israel’s repeated use of heavy bombs in congested Gaza Strip | THE DAILY TRIBUNE | KINGDOM OF BAHRAIN

UN denounces Israel’s repeated use of heavy bombs in congested Gaza Strip

AFP | Geneva

The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com

Israel’s repeated use of heavy bombs in the densely-populated Gaza Strip indicates repeated violations of the laws of war, the UN said yesterday, highlighting six attacks that killed at least 218 people.

In a fresh report, immediately slammed by Israel as deeply biased, the United Nations rights office provided details on the six attacks, which it said were emblematic of a concerning pattern.

They involved the suspected use of up to 2,000-pound bombs on residential buildings, a school, refugee camps and a market.

Deaths The rights office, known by the acronym OHCHR, said it had verified 218 deaths in those attacks, which were carried out in the early months of the war on October 7, but said it had information indicating the number of fatalities “could be much higher”.

“The requirement to select means and methods of warfare that avoid or at the very least minimise to every extent civilian harm appears to have been consistently violated in Israel’s bombing campaign,” UN rights chief Volker Turk said in a statement.

The report concludes that the series of Israeli strikes, exemplified by the six attacks carried out between October 9 and December 2, suggested that Israel’s military had “repeatedly violated fundamental principles of the laws of war”, the statement said.

Among the attacks listed in yesterday’s report were the strikes on Ash Shujaiyeh neighbourhood, in Gaza City on December 2 last year. It caused destruction across an approximate diagonal span of 130 metres (420 feet), destroying 15 buildings and damaging at least 14 others, it said.

The extent of the damage and the craters visible and seen on satellite imagery indicated that around nine 2,000-pound GBU-31 bombs were used, it said, adding that it had received information that at least 60 people were killed.

GBU - 31 s , along with 1,000-pound GBU-32s and 250-pound GBU-39s “are mostly used to penetrate through several floors of concrete and can completely collapse tall structures,” UN rights office spokesman Jeremy Laurence told reporters.

“Given how densely populated the areas targeted were, the use of an explosive weapon with such wide area effects is highly likely to amount to our prohibited indiscriminate attack,” he noted.