- Amnesty Alarmed as Israel Adopts ‘Zero Tolerance’ Policy Against Gaza
by https://www.maannews.com/, 19 Oct 2018
JERUSALEM (Ma’an) — Amnesty International (AI) said, on Friday, fears of escalating bloodshed are rising ahead of planned protests in the besieged Gaza Strip, on Friday, after Israeli authorities announced a “zero tolerance” policy towards demonstrations along the Israeli-Gaza border fence.After an overnight five-hour meeting, the Israeli Security Cabinet instructed the Israeli army “to gradually exacerbate its retaliatory actions to violence along the security fence and to demonstrate a zero-tolerance approach.”
Although Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu instructed the Cabinet ministers not to discuss decisions made with the media, the Israeli Minister of Construction, Yoav Galant, addressed the recent escalation in Gaza and said “I can explicitly say that the rules of the game are about to change.”
However, the exact details of what “zero tolerance” entitles has remained unknown, causing many to fear that it will lead to more Palestinian deaths and casualties along Gaza’s border.Amnesty International called on the Israeli government to rein in its armed forces, which have routinely used unnecessary or excessive force during Gaza’s weekly “The Great March of Return” protests.
Saleh Higazi, the Deputy Director for the Middle East and North Africa at Amnesty International, said “Given Israeli forces’ horrific track record of using deadly force against Palestinian demonstrators in Gaza, as well as journalists, medics and others, the announcement of a ‘zero tolerance’ policy is deeply alarming.”
Higazi stressed “There are serious fears that this policy will further sanction the use of deadly force against unarmed protesters during today’s demonstrations, and that Israeli forces will be given carte blanche authorization to carry out large-scale, unlawful killings escalating the bloodshed. Israel has repeatedly used lethal force unnecessarily and excessively against unarmed protesters in shameless violation of international law.”