Over 800 American and European diplomats and officials signed a “transatlantic” document in which accuse Israel of “serious violations of international law” in the context of the military response against the Gaza Strip to the Hamas attack on 7 October and ask their respective governments for a more decisive reaction. Otherwise, they write in a text seen among others by the BBC, there is “the risk of becoming complicit in one of the most serious humanitarian catastrophes of the century”: potentially leading to scenarios of “ethnic cleansing and genocide”. The document is signed by officials serving on behalf of the US government and those of 11 European countries, among which the BBC mentions the United Kingdom, Germany or France. It was illustrated in copy to the British broadcaster by an American official with “over 25 years of experience” in the ranks of the national security services, who – protected by anonymity – denounced “the continuous refusal” of the leaders of the states concerned to take up these alarms launched by “voices who know the (Middle Eastern) region and its dynamics”.
“The reality here – he said deep-throatedly heard by the BBC – is that we are not just failing to prevent something, we are actively becoming complicit.” The text accuses Israel of “having no limits” in its military operations in Gaza: operations which have already caused “thousands of avoidable civilian deaths” and which, through “the deliberate blockade of aid”, is “putting thousands of civilians facing to the risk of a slow death from starvation”. Not only that: the signatories also evoke, at the expense of the policies of their respective governments, “the plausible risk of contributing” (through a sort of aiding and abetting) to “serious violations of international law, of of war and even ethnic cleansing or genocide.”
«Our governments – continues the letter – have provided public, diplomatic and military support to the Israeli military operation. This support was given without real conditions or accountability and, in the face of humanitarian catastrophe, our governments failed to call for an immediate ceasefire.”
Osama Hamdan, a senior Hamas official in Beirut said any agreement would have to include a permanent ceasefire.
Without a permanent ceasefire “there is no way this is acceptable to the resistance,” Hamdan told Lebanese television LBC, referring to the proposal for subsequent pauses in the fighting.
Hamdan also said the group is calling for the release of thousands of Palestinian prisoners held for acts related to the conflict with Israel, including those serving life sentences. He mentioned two by name, including Marwan Barghouti, a popular leader of the Palestinian uprising.
Hamas, 27,131 dead in Gaza, 112 in the last 24 hours
27,131 people have died, mostly women, children and adolescents, in the Gaza Strip since the start of the war between Israel and Hamas. This was reported by the Palestinian Ministry of Health. Hamas has recorded 112 deaths in the last 24 hours and a toll of 66,287 wounded since the fighting began.