The Biden administration's report says Israel may have violated international law in Gaza.


A State Department report found “substantial” evidence that Israel violated international humanitarian law by using US weapons in Gaza.

The long-awaited report could have asked the US to stop sending weapons to its ally if it violated the terms of the arms deal.

But the investigation did not immediately link the violations to U.S. weapons, giving the Biden administration some leeway on how to ban future sales.

The report was expected to say Israel had not violated international humanitarian law, the AP quoted an unnamed official as saying.

The report was the result of a presidential directive that came after pressure from Democrats to force the administration to decide whether U.S. weapons shipped to Israel were being used legally.

It is unclear whether the United States will continue to investigate whether the violations included in the report were carried out with American weapons.

A separate investigation by Amnesty International found that US shelling was used in two “deadly, illegal airstrikes on houses full of civilians in the occupied Gaza Strip” in October.

“The fact that US-made munitions are being used by the Israeli military in unlawful attacks with deadly consequences for civilians should be an urgent wake-up call for the Biden administration. Secretary-General of Amnesty International, Agnès Callamard said, “American-made weapons facilitated the massacre of large families.

Israel insists it abides by international humanitarian law and blames Hamas for many civilian casualties in operations near civilians. He says he is fighting an existential war against Hamas.

Mr Biden said in December that the “indiscriminate bombing” was eroding international support for Israel, but it was the first time the US government had directly linked Israel to war crimes.

Senator Chris Van Hollen, who led the investigation, said free Earlier this week: “This report will be a test of the Biden administration's credibility on whether or not they are willing to look at all the facts and apply the law to the Gaza war.”

In recent days, President Joe Biden publicly threatened for the first time to cut off arms supplies to Israel if Israel launched a major ground operation in the border city of Rafah.

Mr. Biden made the announcement in an interview with CNN during a visit to Wisconsin on Wednesday, telling anchor Erin Burnett that he would not stop the flow of defensive weapons such as those used for Israel's Iron Dome anti-missile system. Cut the interceptors if they want. Ammunition flows such as a shipment of 2,000 lb bombs that he admitted to intercepting.

“We will continue to ensure that Israel is protected in terms of the Iron Dome and their ability to respond to recent attacks from the Middle East,” he said. “But it's, it's just wrong. We're not going to — we're not going to provide weapons and artillery shells.”

Mr Biden also said he told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that Israel “will not have our support if they are actually going into these population centers”.

“Civilians in Gaza have been killed as a result of the bombs and other methods they use to target population centers.”

free It has previously reported on claims by former State Department and Pentagon officials that the administration's investigation into possible war crimes by Israel was the reason for Mr. Biden's insistence on providing billions of dollars in military aid to his close ally. has been damaged by

Former officials said the president has a decades-long and deep relationship with Israel that renders U.S. laws and regulations on U.S. arms sales essentially toothless.

“There's no incentive to investigate whether the president and the White House themselves have declared that aid is unconditional,” said Brian Finucane, who spent a decade in the State Department's Office of Legal Adviser on arms transfers. And advised about its laws. war

“It means they don't want to hear the painful legal consequences,” he said free last month.

Charles Blaha, former director of the State Department's Office of Security and Human Rights, which manages arms transfers, said an investigation into human rights abuses in the Gaza conflict — if they are occurring at all — would likely But it is not being taken seriously.

“My feeling is that people pat themselves on the head and say, 'This is all very interesting,' but I think the president is decisive here,” he said in April.

The State Department has been working on the report for months. It was supposed to be delivered on Wednesday but was delayed.

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