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"As is" reference - not a United Nations document

Source: International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)
19 May 2004

Civilians must be respected under International Humanitarian Law

Tel Aviv 19.05.04 (ICRC):
Following the intensification of Israel Defense Forces (IDF) operations in the Gaza Strip on May 18 and 19 in Rafah, in which numerous civilians were killed and many more wounded, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) calls for respect for International Humanitarian Law (IHL) and condemns deliberate attacks against civilians who do not take directly part in hostilities. Such attacks are prohibited in all circumstances.

ICRC's concerns in this regard are all the greater as current IDF operations take place in highly populated areas. This requires that the IDF exercises the greatest restraint in all of its operations. Notably, it must take all necessary precautions to spare civilians and civilian property, to ensure that the wounded have access to adequate medical facilities, and that medical personnel and vehicles and facilities can function unhampered.

The ICRC urges the State of Israel to respect its international obligations under the rules of International Humanitarian Law.

For further information, please contact:

Simon Schorno, ICRC Jerusalem, tel. ++972 52 956 371
Uriel Masad, ICRC Tel Aviv, tel. ++ 972 64 681 455
Iyad Nasr, ICRC Gaza, tel. ++ 972 59 77 19 48

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