Thursday, January 7, 2010

IOF Drops Warning Leaflets on Gaza Strip Districts

At app. 9:20am on Thursday 7 January 2010, Israeli airplanes dropped warning leaflets on different areas in Gaza Strip. The leaflets contained warnings to the population. One leaflet threatens people that the IOF would fire at them if they approach as close as 300 meters from border fence. The leaflet contains a rough map of the eastern and northern borders, with marks of what IOF declare as a security 'buffer zone'. This reflects an escalation in Israel's attempts to enforce this security zone inside the Gaza Strip. Al Mezan's documentation indicates that IOF opened fire frequently at Palestinians near the eastern and northern borders. IOF's attacks do not follow a specific pattern. While some attacks have occurred close to the border fence, many other attacks occurred when civilians were more than a kilometer from the the fence.
The second leaflet was directed to the population at large. It contained a statement that what it called 'terrorists, tunnel owners and weapon smugglers' knew that they are legitimate target for the Israeli army; however, continue to work from among civilians and endanger their lives, families and properties. This vague warning raises concerns that IOF would increase disproportionate attacks that fail to distinguish between civilians and combatants in Gaza in violation of international law.