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Human Rights Watch Says Gaza Fighting Violated Rules of War

Human Rights Watch Says Gaza Fighting Violated Rules of War

NGO Human Rights Watch is saying that fighting on both sides of the November 2012 Gaza-Israel conflict violated the laws of war.

In two different reports with data and information collected post-fighting, Human Rights Watch (HRW) says that militants in Gaza targeted civilian, non-enemy combatants. They also say that Israel made unlawful attacks on Palestinian media workers.

“Palestinian armed groups made clear in their statements that harming civilians was their aim,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch in a statement. “There is simply no legal justification for launching rockets at populated areas.”

Israeli attacks on Palestinian media workers said that two Palestinian cameramen were killed at least 10 media workers were wounded. Four media offices were “badly damaged” as were the offices of four private companies. A two-year-old boy who lived across the street from a targeted building was also killed.

“Just because Israel says a journalist was a fighter or a TV station was a command center does not make it so,” said Whitson in a report on the attacks. “Journalists who praise Hamas and TV stations that applaud attacks on Israel may be propagandists, but that does not make them legitimate targets under the laws of war.”



Genevieve Belmaker

Genevieve Belmaker is a freelance journalist and contributing editor with The Epoch Times ( She also contributes to Quill, the magazine of the Society of Professional Journalists and Her blog on journalism is

Genevieve has traveled throughout the U.S., Asia, Central America, Israel and the West Bank for reporting assignments, including major investigative reports on the recovery of New Orleans, the encroaching presence of China in Costa Rica and Nicaragua, the dangerous import of melamine-contaminated milk into the U.S. and settlement outposts in the West Bank. She regularly reports on issues related to journalism, and the work of journalists.

She holds a BA from the University of Southern California in International Relations, and has been a member of several prominent national and international professional media organizations, including the Society of Professional Journalists, Investigative Reporters and Editors, the International Women’s Media Foundation, the New York Press Club, and the Newswomen’s Club of New York. She lives in Jerusalem, Israel with her husband and son.

Areas of Focus:
New Media; Journalism; Culture and Society