US delays report on whether Israel broke international law in Gaza

US delays report on whether Israel broke international law in Gaza
US President Joe Biden's administration has delayed the publication of a report investigating potential Israeli war crimes in Gaza.
2 min read
08 May, 2024
A report into Israeli war crimes has indefinitely been delayed by the US [Getty]

US President Joe Biden’s administration has delayed a report, originally due to be published on Wednesday, investigating potential Israeli war crimes in Gaza, according to Politico.

The State Department had been working for months on the review, which was set to determine whether Israel violated international humanitarian law since the war on Gaza started in October.

If it was found that Israel was indeed violating international laws, the US would be expected to stop sending Israel military assistance to Israel.

No reason or timeline was given as to why the investigation would be indefinitely delayed, and the officials who spoke to Politico spoke under anonymity.

State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller told journalists on Tuesday afternoon the report wasn't yet completed.

"We are trying very hard to meet that deadline… it's possible it slips just a little but, but we are trying to get it done by tomorrow," he added.

Another senior official said they expected it to be delayed by less than a week.

However, the State Department did not respond to questions about the delay, despite pressure from key US political figures for its publication.

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"I've had a lot of conversations… with folks in the administration, really urging them to make sure that this report is credible, that it’s seen to be based on facts and  law and not based on what they would wish it would be," said Democratic Senator Chris Van Hollen, according to Reuters.

The delay comes as Israel continued bombing the southern city of Rafah, where around 1.4 million forcibly displaced Palestinians are sheltering.

Several aid organisations have repeatedly warned against the invasion of Rafah, highlighting it would put civilians even more at risk.

Israeli forces have killed over 34,800 Palestinians since the start of the war on Gaza, and wounded over 78,000 others in the same time frame.

Gaza's civil defence estimate an additional 10,000 others remain trapped under the rubble.

Gaza has been plunged into a deep humanitarian crisis because of the offensive, with entire neighbourhoods levelled and bakeries, schools and hospitals destroyed.