Israel using starvation as weapon of war in Gaza: HRW

Israel using starvation as weapon of war in Gaza: HRW

Gaza: Human Rights Watch has said Israel is using starvation as a weapon by deliberately blocking the delivery of water, food, fuel and razing agricultural areas.

“For over two months, Israel has been depriving Gaza's population of food and water, a policy spurred on or endorsed by high-ranking Israeli officials and reflecting an intent to starve civilians as a method of warfare,” said Omar Shakir, Israel and Palestine director at Human Rights Watch. “World leaders should be speaking out against this abhorrent war crime, which has devastating effects on Gaza’s population.”

Human Rights Watch interviewed 11 displaced Palestinians in Gaza between November 24 and December 4. They described their profound hardships in securing basic necessities. “We had no food, no electricity, no internet, nothing at all,” said one man who had left northern Gaza. “We don’t know how we survived.”

Israel’s bombardment of Gaza has razed large parts of the enclave and displaced the majority of its 2.3 million residents, many now living in makeshift shelters without clean water and food and fighting diseases.

Israeli opposition leader Yair Lapid has called on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to step down as the country's premier after losing the trust of the people of Israel, of the world and of the security establishment, reported Al Jazeera.

Lapid's remarks come amid growing criticism of PM Netanyahu who has been under the spotlight for his handling of the Israel-Hamas conflict.