Conflicts & War

UN denounces Israel’s use of force as 5,000 reserve soldiers called up

(Update 1: Adds the UN statement and info, details, alters headline, lead)

Geneva/Brussels/Jerusalem, May 11 (EFE).- Israel has unnecessarily and disproportionately used force against Palestinians protesting the possible eviction of Palestinian families from an East Jerusalem neighborhood, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said on Tuesday amid an uptick of deadly violence in the region.

“Israeli Security Forces must allow and ensure the exercise of the right to freedoms of expression, association and assembly,” the spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Rupert Colville, said in a statement.

“No force should be used against those exercising their rights peacefully. When use of force is necessary, it should comply fully with international human rights standards. This includes the prohibition of unnecessary or disproportionate use of force,” he added.

“This has not been the case in the past days,” he continued.

The European Commission, meanwhile, called for the immediate de-escalation of the situation and condemned the rocket from Gaza on Israel.

 Israel’s defense minister Benny Gantz on Tuesday approved the mobilization of 5,000 reserve soldiers to face the mounting tension with militants in the Gaza Strip.

From the early hours of Monday, the Islamist Hamas group’s armed wing, the Qasam Brigades, and Palestinian Islamic Jihad fired a barrage of over 250 rockets into Israel.

Israel carried out airstrikes on the enclave in response, killing at least 22 Palestinians, including nine children, the health ministry in the Gaza Strip said.

It added that hundreds of others had been injured in the strikes, which coincided with some of the worst violence between Palestinians and Israeli security forces in Jerusalem for years.

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