Lebanon/ Israel: prosecute war crimes in France

The continuing war in Lebanon, a situation more dramatic than any previously known in the Gaza Strip, and the inertia of the international community, whose cynicism has reached its zenith, have already produced devastating effects. The situation is deteriorating, with increasing destruction and losses in human life.

Hatred and the rejection of “the Other” have sunk into the hearts of the people; undermining any hope for peace. The path to disorder is now wide open: tomorrow, some will justify violence in the name of injustices committed today. Already , calls for murder and destruction can be heard, mirroring that which has already occurred. In this fatal process, it is the world which is being hijacked.

The time has passed for incessant comments on the factors that have led to such a situation. The Israeli government can continue to argue that three of its soldiers were kidnapped and that its population is subject, in the northern and southern areas of its territory, to indiscriminate attacks. As the argument goes, these aggressions against Israeli cities also amount to war crimes.

We are aware of the despicable game played by Syria and Iran, both countries in which their own people live under intolerable regimes, yet which first condemn the wrongs of others.

Today, in Lebanon and Gaza, the actions of the Israeli government have led it to attack the civil population indiscriminately, and in a large-scale manner. Nothing can justify the destruction of essential services such as food production facilities, electricity supplies, factories, roads, bridges, ports, etc.

Nothing can justify the losses inflicted on the civil populations, which are not collateral effects of legitimate actions of war but are instead a deliberate and willful punishment on the collective population, including murder. These are war crimes of exceptional gravity, knowingly organized by a democratic government.

By refusing to implement an immediate cease-fire, the international community ignores the right to life of hundreds of thousands of people. This attitude should not prevent the victims of these attacks being heard, nor should it prevent the perpetrators of war crimes being sanctioned. This is one of the means by which we can ensure that laws prevails over might and, perhaps deter other acts of violence.

For these reasons LDH and FIDH are providing the necessary support and assistance to Franco-Lebanese nationals to exercise their rights in France against those responsible for their suffering.

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