Geneva - About 100,000 Palestinians have been killed, reported missing, or wounded since 7 October 2023 due to Israel’s ongoing genocide in the Gaza Strip, Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor said in a statement on Saturday, noting that the number includes those who now have long-term disabilities.

A total of 31,497 Palestinians in the Gaza Strip have been killed as of today, 13 January 2024, Euro-Med Monitor estimated. Of those killed in the Israeli air and artillery attacks on the Strip, 28,951 (92%) were civilians, including 12,345 children, 6,471 women, 295 health personnel, 41 civil defense personnel, and 113 journalists. Meanwhile, 61,079 individuals have been injured, hundreds of them critically.

   Israel has flagrantly broken the terms of international humanitarian law, Euro-Med Monitor reiterated, which forbids property damage as a “preventive means” and property destruction as a means of deterrence, even for military purposes.   

The human rights group explained that, in addition to the statistics provided by the Palestinian Health Ministry, its own figures include people who went missing after being arrested and forcibly disappeared by the Israeli army, as well as those who have been trapped beneath the debris of buildings hit by Israeli air and artillery strikes for more than 14 consecutive days now and are therefore presumed dead. Hundreds of bodies that cannot be recovered due to the ongoing Israeli violence remain on the roads, said Euro-Med Monitor, particularly in areas where Israel’s army has conducted ground incursions.The Euro-Med Monitor team further reported that about 1.955 million Palestinians, approximately 85% of the total population of the Strip, have been displaced from their homes and residential areas amid a lack of safe shelters, as 69,700 housing units have been completely destroyed and 187,300 housing units have been partially damaged.

According to the team, the facilities that have been targeted by Israel during its ongoing attacks include 320 schools; 1,671 industrial facilities; 183 health facilities, including 23 hospitals, 59 clinics, and 92 ambulances; 239 mosques; three churches; and 170 press offices. Euro-Med Monitor stated that Israel continues to escalate its military assaults against Palestinian civilians in an apparent attempt to expand its territory to include the entire Gaza Strip, uprooting the vast majority of the Strip’s population in violation of international law. This likely amounts to war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide, the rights group said.According to the Geneva-based organisation, Israel is deliberately targeting civilian infrastructure in order to cause as many casualties, material losses, and as much general destruction as possible as a form of retaliation and collective punishment. This is against international humanitarian law, the 1949 Geneva Convention, and amounts to war crimes according to the Rome Statute, which governs the International Criminal Court.

Israel has flagrantly broken the terms of international humanitarian law, Euro-Med Monitor reiterated, which forbids property damage as a “preventive means” and property destruction as a means of deterrence, even for military purposes.

Euro-Med Monitor stressed the importance of South Africa’s decision to file a complaint against Israel for committing genocide before the International Court of Justice, calling it a historical precedent and a first step toward holding Israel accountable at the international judicial level and breaking its immunity. The rights organisation emphasised that the lawsuit—no matter the outcome—puts genuine pressure on Israel, and that if the Court does decide to take immediate, temporary action as a first step, Israel and its allies will be forced to face even more expensive political, legal, and moral repercussions.

Both South Africa and Israel have completed, in the last two days, their respective pleadings before the Court, Euro-Med Monitor said. The International Court of Justice is currently reviewing the case and will be making a decision on the urgent, temporary measures that South Africa has requested, the most notable of which is an end to Israel’s military actions inside and against the Gaza Strip.

Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor renewed its call for an international investigation into the widely documented violations that have occurred since Israel began its ongoing genocidal war on the Gaza Strip, and for the international community to work to end the state of impunity that Israel enjoys. Those responsible for Israel’s crimes must be held accountable, said Euro-Med Monitor. The group demanded that all those who have issued and carried out the brutal orders against Palestinians in the Strip be brought to justice, and that every victim be fairly compensated