Owner of destroyed Gaza building which housed media offices files ICC complaint

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Published: May 22, 2021, 02:02 PM(IST)

Israeli airstrike destroyed building that housed media offices (file photo) Photograph:( Reuters )

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After the attack, Israel claimed that Hamas military intelligence units were operating from the building

The owner of a building in Gaza which was destroyed in Israeli airstrike is raising a complaint with the International Criminal Court. The building in question is called Jala Tower, which was destroyed on May 15. The building housed the offices of Associated Press and Al Jazeera.

According to the owner Jawad Mehdi, the flattening of the building counts as a “war crime”. "The owner of this building, who is a Palestinian, has mandated his lawyers to file a war crime complaint with the International Criminal Court,"  the man’s lawyer Gilles Devers said in a statement.

In addition, Devers told AFP that Israel could show “no military objective” for the attack. "We hear a lot that this tower could have been destroyed because there was equipment or an armed resistance team. This is something that we totally deny after studying the case," Devers added.

The lawyer added how international law states that civilian property may be harmed only if it is used for military purposes, which was “not the case”. The complaint would be forwarded formally to the court by email on Friday.

After the attack, Israel claimed that Hamas military intelligence units were operating from the building. At the time, an Israeli intelligence officer told Mehdi that he had an hour to evacuate the building, before a missile struck it.

Once complaints to ICC are submitted, it is not under any obligation to take all into account and can independently decide which cases to forward to court judges.

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