Law, War and Al-Shifa Hospital

Interviewed about the Israel Defence Forces’ actions at the Al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza, international law expert Natasha Hausdorff first highlighted the war crime that Hamas have committed by using a protected building like a hospital for military purposes. She noted that hospitals are the most protected buildings in the context of the laws of armed conflict, so much so that even a military hospital is considered to be protected under the laws of war.

Amid the international pressure upon Israel to obey the laws governing warfare, she expressed deep disappointment that we`re not hearing greater condemnation, or in some instances any condemnation, of these breaches of the laws of arm conflict by Hamas. The UN Security Council resolution passed on Wednesday 15th November failed even to condemn the 7th October attack by Hamas upon Israeli civilians.

In contrast to Hamas’ barbaric assault on Israel, the Israeli forces have conducted careful operations around Shifa and other hospitals in the Gaza Strip. Contrary to public perceptions, those hospitals have become legitimate military targets because they are being used for military purposes. They become legitimate targets once appropriate warnings have been given.

Here’s the full interview with i24 News: