Israel is likely to have committed war crimes in Gaza, Human Rights Watch (HRW) said today (September 11, 2014) -- a day after the Israeli army announced five criminal investigations into incidents involving its forces -- the AFP (Agence France-Presse) website reports.
The 50-day Gaza war between Israel and Hamas-led militants ended on August 26 after killing more than 2,100 Palestinians -- most of them civilians -- and 73 people on the Israeli side, 67 of them soldiers.
The New York-based rights watchdog said in a statement today that in three cases it examined, Israel unnecessarily caused "numerous civilian casualties in violation of the laws of war."
The incidents were the separate shellings of two UN schools in northern Gaza on July 24 and 30, and a guided missile strike on another UN school in the southern city of Rafah on August 3. The attacks killed a total of 45 people, including 17 children, HRW said.