Israel denies intending to strike civilians, says situation would be ‘a lot worse’ if it did

Israel has insisted it “categorically” does not intend to strike civilians, and if it did, the situation would be “a lot worse”.

After reviewing evidence from Israel on the hospital blast in Gaza, Sky News’s Anna Botting confronted the spokesperson of the Israel Defence Forces, questioning whether he acknowledges that the individuals seeking refuge in the hospital would not have been there if their homes had not been destroyed by bombings.

Jonathan Conricus says he thinks the question is “unfair”.

“We can go back and ask, had they not been there, if Hamas had not launched a murderous attack on our civilians, butchered thousands of civilians, raped women and mutilated bodies of Israelis and taken almost 200 hostages – where shall we start?”

Botting suggested that Israel’s policy on not harming civilians has been unsuccessful following claims by Hamas that some 3,478 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli air raids in Gaza, and another 12,000 Palestinians have been injured, with many others reportedly injured and missing. 

“There’s a lot to unpack here. First, I would like to say that we categorically do not strike civilians, we do not aim to strike civilians that is not the purpose of our military operations,” Mr Conricus said.

“If it were, the situation would be much, much worse, and it isn’t, because we do not purposefully strike civilians.”

Mr Conricus added that Israel has “done a lot to get civilians out of the way”, with Hamas preventing such operations. 

As protesters throwing stones are shot by Israeli snipers, this is part of ‘normal’ life for the West Bank – (A Reporter’s Opinion)

We filmed as a small group of teenagers whirling slings above their heads lobbed stones at an Israeli military vehicle 100m or so up the road on the outskirts of the West Bank city of Ramallah. 

They’re taunting members of the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) stationed at their main military communications hub.

Above them snipers wait and watch.

You only need to pay a cursory look at the blackened tarmac of the roads and the scorch marks of fires on the nearby border wall with Israel to understand that this is a scene considered ‘normal’ in this part of the world – it happens all the time.

What is worth thinking about though is that in the relatively short time we filmed, four of the stone throwers were shot by Israeli snipers perched on a hill nearby.

Not with tear gas or baton rounds, but with bullets. They were throwing stones.

Boy and woman found ‘incinerated’ after Hamas attack

A boy and a woman have been found 11 days after they were killed and “incinerated” in Hamas’s attacks, a casualty recovery group has said.

Their remains were discovered at a house that burned down in the Beeri kibbutz, said Zaka.

“Their bodies were incinerated after they were murdered,” it said.

Approximately 10% of those living in the kibbutz  – 108 people – were killed in the attacks, of a total 1,400 deaths on 7 October, according to Israeli officials.

Israel said it expected the number to keep slowly rising as forensics enable the identification of bodies.

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