Arusha, December 10, 2012 (FH) – Human Rights Watch (HRW) has accused the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) of war crimes after a November aerial bombing raid that killed 12 civilians in Gaza.

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According to an HRW statement issued on Friday, the IDF planned and authorized the attack at the home of Mohamed Jamal al-Dalu, a low-ranking police officer. Such an attack, it claims, was a clear violation of the laws of war.

On November 18, 2012, Israeli forces dropped what appears to have been a large aerial bomb on the three-story home of the Dalu family in Gaza City, killing 10 members of the household and two others nearby.

“The Israeli claim that the attack on the Dalu home was justified is unsupported by the facts,” the statement quotes Fred Abrahams, special advisor at Human Rights Watch, as saying.

HRW said attacks in which the expected civilian loss exceeds the anticipated military gain are serious violations of the laws of war, and that Israel has an obligation to investigate.

“Victims of laws of war violations and their families should be promptly and adequately compensated. Anyone responsible for deliberately or recklessly committing a serious violation of the laws of war should be prosecuted for war crimes,” the statement says.FK/NI