Written answers

Thursday, 5 March 2020

Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

Foreign Conflicts

Photo of Seán CroweSeán Crowe (Dublin South West, Sinn Fein)
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58. To ask the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if his attention has been drawn to footage of the Israeli military killing a Palestinian civilian near the military fence in Gaza (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [3886/20]

Photo of Simon CoveneySimon Coveney (Cork South Central, Fine Gael)
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I am aware of the incident to which the Deputy refers. The circumstances in which this person was killed are unclear, and therefore I will not comment on the events leading to their death.

However, the apparent manner in which the Israeli Defence Forces removed the body of the deceased, as shown in a video and in images widely circulated on social and traditional media, is deeply disturbing. International humanitarian law, as set out in the Geneva Conventions, their Additional Protocols and elsewhere, includes provisions designed to prevent maltreatment of dead bodies in times of conflict, and to ensure that the deceased are treated decently. I am also concerned by reports of the use of excessive force against Palestinian civilians, who attempted to recover the body.

Israel's obligations under international humanitarian law are clear and I call on the Israeli authorities to respect these obligations with due regard for the protection of basic human dignity. It is recalled in this regard that Israel has a duty to investigate possible violations by its armed forces and prosecute if necessary. 


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