Israel flattens Gaza’s Jabalia as officials present genocide defense at ICJ
05/20/2024 // News Editors // Views

Fierce clashes continued to rage in Gaza’s northern city of Jabalia on 17 May as Israel launched indiscriminate airstrikes across the strip.

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Israeli troops persisted with their incursion into the Jabalia refugee camp for the sixth day in a row, Al Mayadeen’s correspondent reported.

Non-stop bombardment has targeted the camp since the early hours of 17 May. Heavy gunfire also inflicted the camp as Israeli vehicles pushed deeper inside.

“Israel’s focus is Jabalia now. Tanks and jets are wiping out residential districts as well as markets, shops, restaurants, everything. It is all happening before the one-eyed world. Shame on the world," a resident of Jabalia, Ayman Rajab, told Reuters.

“The Americans are going to get us some food. We want no food, we want this war to end and then we can manage our lives on our own,” he added.

The army also advanced towards the entrance of the northern city of Beit Hanoun and laid siege to the area, according to Al Mayadeen.

Israeli forces continue to face heavy resistance from Hamas’ military wing and other groups.

“The Qassam Mujahideen snuck behind enemy lines penetrating east of the Jabalia camp, and targeted a Merkava tank with an enemy soldier riding on it, as well as a Zionist troop carrier with Al-Yassin 105 shells. The mujahideen also blew up a tunnel entrance with another troop carrier arrived at the location,” Hamas’ Qassam Brigades said in a statement on Friday.

The Qassam Brigades also said its fighters “cut off the enemy’s supply line east of the Jabalia camp … after they targeted a troop carrier there with an Al-Yassin 105 shell, and rained bullets on a group of enemy soldiers with a BKC machine gun, leaving them dead and wounded, and forcing the enemy to change the supply line for its invading forces.”

The Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) movement’s Quds Brigades announced targeting Israeli snipers and launching mortars on Israeli infantry forces.

Meanwhile, Israeli jets pounded the entire strip, killing several. In the Nuseirat camp in the central Gaza Strip, Israeli airstrikes killed four Palestinians and injured a number of others at a school sheltering displaced people.

Israel also bombarded Khan Yunis and Rafah in the south and Gaza City in the north.

“Israeli fighter jets targeted the Askula area in Gaza and two houses; one in front of Kuwait Hospital in Rafah and the other in Al-Janeinah neighborhood,” WAFA news agency reported.

The heavy clashes and indiscriminate bombardment across Gaza came as Israel’s delegation was giving its defense at the International Court of Justice (ICJ). A day earlier, hearings began as the court heard South Africa’s opening argument.

Pretoria filed an application for an urgent session at the ICJ last week in order to demand additional emergency measures to halt Israel’s ongoing assault on Gaza’s southernmost city of Rafah, which has killed dozens, displaced hundreds of thousands, and severely hindered aid entry into Gaza since 7 May.

At the court, Israel’s legal team argued that Tel Aviv has gone to great lengths to bring aid into Gaza and urged the ICJ to reject South Africa’s request for additional measures to halt the Rafah operation.

Israel’s Deputy Attorney General for International Law Gilad Noam accused South Africa of having an “ulterior motive” and that it is requesting additional measures because it “wants a military advantage for its ally Hamas, which it does not want to see defeated.”

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