Middle East

Germany says Israel is abiding by humanitarian law in Gaza war

Chancellery spokesman says he has ‘no doubt that Israel is complying with humanitarian law’ in Gaza war amid mounting criticism by UN, EU

Oliver Towfigh Nia  | 27.10.2023 - Update : 27.10.2023
Germany says Israel is abiding by humanitarian law in Gaza war A view of the area in the city of Khan Yunis, Gaza where some buildings collapsed or heavily damaged in Israeli airstrikes on October 26, 2023. Civilians tried to save victims of the attacks trapped under rubble.


Germany on Friday stressed it had “no doubt that Israel is complying with humanitarian law” in the war in Gaza amid mounting criticism by the UN and the EU. 

“The chancellor has made it clear that Germany stands on Israel’s side. We have no doubt that Israel is complying with international law or international humanitarian law in everything it does to defend itself against this terror,” Wolfgang Buechner, deputy government spokesman, said at a press briefing in Berlin following a reporter’s question.

“We assume, as the chancellor said, that we trust that a democratic, constitutional state of Israel will adhere to all applicable rules in this context. And we are not sitting here to give instructions and advice to Israel because we trust this country, this partner we have in the Middle East,” he added.

On Wednesday, Chancellor Olaf Scholz reaffirmed Germany’s unconditional support for Israel as EU leaders were wrangling over the wording of the communique of EU summit.

“Israel is a democratic state guided by very humanitarian principles, so we can be certain that the Israeli army will respect the rules that arise from international law in everything it does,” Scholz said, reiterating his stance that Israel would abide by international law. “I have no doubt about that.”

Scholz’s remarks, however, were in a stark contrast with comments made in recent days by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres as well as EU’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell and European Council President Charles Michel, who have hinted a total blockade of Gaza and attacks on civilian infrastructure would be a violation of international humanitarian law.

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