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Saturday December 04, 2021

Israeli court rejects Gaza doctor’s appeal for damages

By AFP
November 26, 2021
Israeli court rejects Gaza doctor’s appeal for damages

OCCUPIED-AL-QUDS: Israel’s Supreme Court rejected on Thursday an appeal from a Palestinian doctor who sought compensation for the killing of three of his daughters and a niece during the 2008-2009 Gaza war.

Izzeldin Abuelaish, a gynaecologist who now lives in Canada, filed a civil complaint in 2010 after the January 2009 incident that killed the four young females, ranging in age from 13 to 20.

Israel’s top court called the incident a "tragic event" but said it was not awarding compensation because the law affords "substantial immunity" to the state in times of conflict. "Our heart goes out to the petitioner, a bereaved uncle and father to three girls who were killed prematurely," the court said.

"At the same time, the severe consequences caused to the petitioner have no remedy and solution in the process at hand." Abuelaish, who speaks Hebrew and was educated at Harvard University, worked in an Israeli hospital during the conflict.

The deaths occurred when his family home in Gaza was hit by Israeli tank fire. The case gained attention after he called an Israeli television station shortly after the deaths.

Israel’s army had said it was targeting militants in the area amid the conflict that began afterHamas took over the enclave in 2007. The Abuelaish family has always categorically denied any Hamas members were in the home.

Speaking outside the Jerusalem court last week where his appeal was heard, Abuelaish called on Israel to show "the moral, ethical and human courage" to admit wrongdoing. "The biggest challenge in our world is individual responsibility. They have to overcome this fear, or arrogance, or greed, or denial. They have to acknowledge it and I am determined," he said.