Israel using 'most destructive bombs' on Gaza civilians in 'safe zones': report
Video evidence analysed by the New York Times showed the routine use of 2,000-pound bombs on areas designated by the army as safe for civilians. Local residents have emphasised to reporters that there is no safe place to go in Gaza.
The report said that during the first six weeks of the war, bombs of such size were used at least 200 times. The report cited AI-based analysis of satellite imagery and drone footage of the south of Gaza.
Munitions experts cited by NYT explained that such bombs employed are “almost never dropped by US forces in densely populated areas anymore”.
Giant craters measuring 40 feet across or larger were also identified, which experts noted are typically only caused by 2,000 pound bombs or larger.
At least 208 such craters have been located, according to the article.
NYT said their findings have since proven that such bombardments “posed a pervasive threat” on civilians, even for those who followed every Israeli evacuation order, as there is nowhere for Gazans to find safety.
An Israeli military spokesperson responded to NYT's report saying that Israel’s priority is destroying Hamas.
Amid shortages in food supplies, children in Gaza are facing hunger and malnutrition as winter bites 👇 pic.twitter.com/AWvAUJiEld— The New Arab (@The_NewArab) December 22, 2023
The spokesperson added that “questions of this kind will be looked into at a later stage” and claimed that Israeli forces take “feasible precautions to mitigate civilian harm”.
Local journalists and rights groups have documented the impact of Israel's bombing of Gaza, with Amnesty International chief Agnes Callamard saying: "In their stated intent to use all means to destroy Hamas, Israeli forces have shown a shocking disregard for civilian lives."
According to Palestinian health officials, 20,057 Palestinians had been killed and 53,320 wounded in Israeli strikes since the war on Gaza started.
However, since October, Israel’s closest ally has shipped more than 5,000 MK-84 munitions, which are a form of 2,000-pound bomb.
The US has also provided diplomatic cover for Israel at the UN, using its veto power in the Security Council to block resolutions on a ceasefire.