AIJAC condemns targeting of Israeli civilians by Palestinian Islamic Jihad
Aug 7, 2022 | AIJAC
The Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council (AIJAC) today condemned the continued targeting of Israeli civilians by the terrorist group Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ). PIJ, widely proscribed as a terrorist group, including by Australia, the US, Canada and the European Union, has fired more than 350 rockets at Israel since Friday, including more than 90 which have fallen inside the Gaza Strip. One of these fell on a house in Jabaliya in Gaza, killing seven, including four children, a tragedy the Palestinians are now trying to blame Israel for.The violence was triggered when Israel, acting on reliable intelligence that PIJ was about to carry out a series of attacks against Israeli civilians, including employing anti-tank missiles, targeted the terrorists planning these attacks. These included Tayseer Jabari, the terror group’s commander in northern Gaza. Jabari has in the past been responsible for hundreds of rocket attacks against Israel. AIJAC Executive Director Dr Colin Rubenstein said, “Israel has the right and obligation to defend its citizens against terrorism, the same as any other country. The Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist group – a proxy of Iran dedicated to destroying Israel and killing Israelis – has, true to form, responded to Israel’s legitimate exercise of that right to self-defence by committing multiple war crimes. It is indiscriminately targeting innocent Israeli civilians with rocket barrages, very clearly a war crime, while hiding among the civilians of Gaza, also a war crime. “The death of any civilian is a tragedy, but PIJ traffics in the lives of Israeli civilians and also those of the Palestinian residents of Gaza. The group’s manifest cynicism and immorality are blatantly obvious in the way it shelters its military infrastructure among civilians, knowing Israel will be unfairly blamed for any civilian casualties that result. This is made even more clear in the way it seeks to blame Israel for deaths caused by its own rockets misfiring. “Terror groups such as PIJ see a benefit in these cynical and immoral tactics, partly because of the inevitable condemnation of Israel, and partly because of the casualties, damage, disruption and fear they cause to innocent Israelis. The international community must unequivocally condemn these terror tactics and affirm Israel’s right to defend itself and its civilians,” Dr Rubenstein concluded.