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Source: International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)
26 April 2006

26-04-2006  Press Release 06/36 
Israel / occupied and autonomous Palestinian territories : Civilians must be spared in all circumstances

Geneva/Tel Aviv (ICRC) – The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is alarmed by the number of civilians killed or injured during attacks and military operations in Israel and in the occupied and autonomous territories over recent weeks.

The last two suicide bomb attacks, in Kedumim in the West Bank on 30 March and in Tel Aviv on 17 April, claimed the lives of 15 civilians and wounded more than 50 others. Other acts of violence such as the launching of Qassam rockets into Israel are also endangering civilian lives.

As a result of Israeli military operations during the past weeks – particularly the shelling of the Gaza Strip – a number of civilians, including two children, lost their lives and many others were wounded.

International humanitarian law strictly prohibits attacks directed against civilians and civilian objects, and acts of violence intended to spread terror among the civilian population. Indiscriminate attacks are also prohibited under this body of law, which requires that a strict distinction be made between the civilian population and military objectives.

The ICRC calls on all those involved in the conflict to spare and protect civilians, and insists that all those concerned respect and ensure respect for the rules and principles of international humanitarian law in all circumstances.

Civilians must not pay the price of conflict; any civilian loss of life, on either side, further fuels the conflict and generates more loss, suffering and grief.

The ICRC remains committed to pursuing its humanitarian work in Israel and in the occupied and autonomous territories.

For further information, please contact:
Vincent Lusser, ICRC Geneva, tel. +41 22 730 24 26 or (mobile) +41 79 217 32 64
Caspar Landolt, ICRC Jerusalem, tel. +972 2 582 88 45 or (mobile) +972 57 773 52 35
Bana Sayeh, ICRC Jerusalem, tel. +972 2 582 88 45 or (mobile) +972 57 880 91 93
Yael Segev Eytan , ICRC Tel Aviv, tel. +972 35 24 52 86 or (mobile) +972 52 275 75 17
Iyad Nasr, ICRC Gaza, tel. +972 8 28 28 874 or mobile +972 59 60 30 15

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