Sunday, 20 Jun 2021 - 10 of Tammuz, 5781
EU

12-story building destroyed by the IDF in Gaza ‘housed Hamas military intelligence’

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EU spokesperson said the ”destruction of media offices in Gaza is extremely worrying.”

‘’The building contained civilian media offices, which the Hamas terror organization hides behind and uses as human shields. The Hamas terror organization deliberately places military targets at the heart of densely populated civilian areas in the Gaza Strip,’’ the IDF said.

“The destruction of media offices in Gaza is extremely worrying and the safety and security of journalists and all their colleagues, the press people, is essential,” an EU spokesperson said Monday at the daily briefing after Israel destroyed a  building housing offices of Al Jazeera channel and of Associated Press claiming that Hamas used the building for its military intelligence.

The 12-story Jala’a building also housed military assets belonging both to Hamas and the Islamic Jihad terror groups, the Israeli army said.

Peter Stano, EU spokesperson for foreign affirs, said. “Independent reporting, especially in situations of conflict and especially from areas of conflict, is indispensable.”

‘’The building contained civilian media offices, which the Hamas terror organization hides behind and uses as human shields. The Hamas terror organization deliberately places military targets at the heart of densely populated civilian areas in the Gaza Strip,’’ the IDF said.

The building housed the Hamas Research and Development unit, which is responsible, among other things, for terror activity carried out against Israel.

The R&D unit consists of subject matter experts (SMEs) which constitute a unique asset to the Hamas terrorist organization. These SMEs operate the most valuable Hamas technological equipment against Israel.

The unit used these capabilities against Israel in a number of incidents in attempts to sabotage and disrupt the actions of the IDF and of civilians in the area adjacent to the Gaza Strip.

Prior to striking, the IDF provided advance warning to civilians in the building and allowed sufficient time for them to evacuate the site.

Israeli officials said Israel shared intelligence with the US showing how Hamas operated inside the building.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reportedly shared the intelligence with US officials during a phone call with US President Joe Biden.

“We showed them the smoking gun proving Hamas worked out of that building,” a senior diplomatic source told The Jerusalem Post.  “I understand they found the explanation satisfactory.”

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Monday that he is yet to see evidence that Hamas operated in the building.

Associated Press reported that it had no knowledge of Hamas using the building, despite their bureau having been there for 15 years and a former staffer writing several years ago that the outlet was fully aware of who else was in the tower.

The reason that AP was able to evacuate its journalists is because the IDF alerted every single person inside that the building was about to be targeted by an airstrike. And aside from phone calls and text messages, the IDF clips the rooftops of such targets with a drone strike—meant not to cause significant damage, but to further warn civilians inside the building that they are risking their lives by staying inside.

The IDF has taken these same measures with nearly every carefully selected target, as it works with surgical precision to hit terrorist infrastructure, while limiting the possibility of civilian casualties.

It is a procedure that no other army in the world would dare undertake, as it gives additional time to the enemy to continue firing rockets at population centers. It is a practice that is not featured prominently in mainstream-media coverage.

As reported by Palestinian Media Watch, even the Palestinian press has acknowledged that buildings are evacuated before they are hit.

PMW director Itamar Marcus noted that “Israel’s care for civilians is unique, especially in the history of warfare against terror organizations that use civilians as human shields. Moreover, the international community’s questioning of Israel about civilian casualties exposes its great hypocrisy.”

 

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