France 'deeply concerned' over recent Israeli strikes on Gaza schools

French Foreign Ministry calls 'on clarifying all the facts on these strikes' that it describes as 'unacceptable'

Nur Asena Erturk  | 10.07.2024 - Update : 10.07.2024
France 'deeply concerned' over recent Israeli strikes on Gaza schools


France is deeply concerned over the recent Israeli strikes on schools in Gaza, according to an official statement on Wednesday.

The French Foreign Ministry recalled that the attack on Al-Awda school on Tuesday was the third one aiming at a school for displaced children since Saturday.

A school affiliated with the UN agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) and another affiliated with the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem were also targeted, the ministry added.

“We call on clarifying all the facts on these strikes, the statement read. It is unacceptable that schools that are a fortiori hosting civilian populations displaced due to the conflict are targeted.”

The French ministry called on Israel to do all to “protect the civilians” and respect international humanitarian law.

“In the face of the humanitarian emergency in Gaza, France calls on an immediate and durable cease-fire that would alone ensure the protection of civilian populations, the liberation of the hostages, and the entry of massive humanitarian aid from all access points into the Gaza Strip,” it noted.

During its offensive on Gaza, now into its ninth month, Israel has repeatedly hit civilian facilities such as schools, hospitals, and places of worship. Under the rules of war, such facilities are off limits to attacks, which could be a war crime.

At least 25 people were killed in an Israeli airstrike Tuesday on a school housing displaced people in the southern Gaza Strip, according to medics.

The Israeli army committed the massacre at Al-Awda School in the town of Abasan, east of Khan Younis, the Gaza Health Ministry said in a statement.

More than 53 were injured, with some in serious and critical condition, the statement added.

Since the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas war last October, the Israeli army has hit several centers for displaced Palestinians across the Gaza Strip, killing dozens.

Israel, flouting a UN Security Council resolution demanding an immediate cease-fire, has faced international condemnation amid its continued brutal offensive on Gaza since an Oct. 7, 2023 attack by Palestinian group Hamas.

Nearly 38,200 Palestinians have since been killed, mostly women and children, and 88,000 others injured, according to local health authorities.

Nine months into the Israeli war, vast tracts of Gaza lie in ruins amid a crippling blockade of food, clean water, and medicine.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice, whose latest ruling ordered it to immediately halt its military operation in the southern city of Rafah, where over a million Palestinians had sought refuge from the war before it was invaded on May 6.

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