A member of the Israeli Knesset has doubled down on comments he made in November when he called to “burn Gaza now” and is now claiming there are “no innocents” in areas where the Israeli military ordered evacuations.
“I stand behind what I said. It is better to burn, to take down buildings, than that our soldiers should be harmed,” said MK Nissim Vaturi, a member of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party.
“I said to ‘burn Gaza.’ What does it mean to burn? To go in and rip them apart. There should be no thoughts, no considerations. The soldiers of the IDF should not think for one second and be hurt because we need to be humane,” Vaturi added.
Discussing the areas where the Israeli military ordered evacuations, Vaturi said, “We evacuated them all – we succeeded in evacuating 1,900,000 in an organized fashion, and there are 100,0000 left. I don’t think that there are any innocents there now – not now, and not when I made my statement.”
Many Palestinian civilians stayed in northern Gaza and other areas following evacuation orders from the Israeli military for a multitude of reasons, including the fact that many of the so-called “safe zones” were still being bombed.
Vaturi’s comments come a day before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) will hold its first hearing on South Africa’s genocide case that it has brought against Israel. The 84-page filing submitted by South Africa cites genocidal rhetoric from Israeli officials as evidence of Israel’s intent to commit genocide against Gaza’s Palestinian population.