United Nations Security Council to Press Israel on Gaza School Attacks

Ban Says He Expects 'Full Explanation' From Israel

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has demanded a full explanation from Israel regarding its attacks on UN schools and other facilities during the 22-day war in the Gaza Strip, which he called “outrageous.”

After the statement by Secretary General Ban, the United Nations Security Council is said to be likely to release a statement of its own also demanding the Israeli government explain its actions. Ban, who has just completed a tour of the Gaza Strip, says he expects that “those responsible will be held accountable for their actions.”

During the war, which killed over 1,400 Palestinians, the Israeli military struck numerous UN facilities, but perhaps the most durable image was its January 6 attack on the al-Fahoura girls’ school in Jabalya refugee camp, which at the time was housing hundreds of displaced civilians. The attack killed 46 and wounded 55 others. The Israeli government changed its official story regarding the attack several times, but none of its stories seemed consistent with events on the ground or even with one another.

The United Nations Relief and Works Agency was also hit on January 15, with white phosphorus munitions, and while that attack didn’t cause the enormous casualties of some of the others, it destroyed several tons of humanitarian aid in a warehouse. Israel likewise never seemed to settle on an official explanation for this attack.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.