Geneva – The Israeli army’s execution of an elderly Palestinian after using him in a propaganda campaign promoting its “safe corridor” in Gaza was strongly condemned in a statement released by Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor today.

The rights organisation expressed outrage over Israel’s incorporating the man into its attempt to cover up horrific crimes against displaced Palestinians fleeing Israeli violence in the northern Gaza Strip.

Israel’s army released a photo of one of its soldiers talking to Bashir Hajji, a 79-year-old resident of Gaza City's Zaytoun neighborhood, as he travelled on Salah al-Din Road, the main route to the southern Gaza Valley. The soldier in the photo appears to be helping and protecting displaced Palestinian civilians, said Euro-Med Monitor, yet Hajji was subjected to a field execution on the morning of Friday 10 November.

The elderly man’s granddaughter, Hala Hajji, told the Euro-Med Monitor team that her grandfather was brutally executed while crossing the “safe corridor” when members of the Israeli army intentionally shot him in the head and back. She also confirmed that he is in the photo that was put out by Israel—exposing the Israeli army's dangerous practice of flagrantly fabricating stories.

Euro-Med Monitor stated that it has previously documented dozens of cases where the Israeli army executed displaced Palestinians by live bullets and, in some cases, by artillery shells. Those displaced were attempting to flee to the south of Wadi Gaza at the Israeli army’s request.

Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor renewed its calls for the United Nations and the International Criminal Court to open an urgent independent investigation into the execution crimes to which displaced Palestinians have been and are still being subjected to, to hold those who ordered such crimes accountable, and to achieve justice for the victims.