Israel says it will investigate Gaza strike that killed eight members of Palestinian family

Israel says it will investigate Gaza strike that killed eight members of Palestinian family

The Israeli army said it plans to investigate a 13 November air strike on the Gaza Strip that killed eight members of the same Palestinian family, including five children

The air strike on the home of the al-Sawarka family in Deir al-Balah refugee camp was the single deadliest incident in two days of bombardment by the Israeli army, after its assassination of a senior Islamic Jihad commander and his wife

The Israeli attack killed Rasmi al-Sawarka, also known as Rasmi Abu Malhous, his two wives, and five children, the Palestinian health ministry said

In a statement on Friday, Israeli military spokesman Jonathan Conricus told the AFP news agency that the army’s intelligence had indicated no civilians were expected to be harmed at the time of the strike

The army said it is “investigating the harm caused to civilians by the strike

Before the statement was released, the Israeli army’s Arabic media spokesman, Avichay Adraee, justified the air strike on Twitter, claiming that Sawarka was an Islamic Jihad commander 

On Friday, the United Nations special coordinator for the Middle East peace process said there is no justification to attacking civilians in Gaza

“My heartfelt condolences to the family of al-Sawarkah & I wish a speedy recovery to the injured. I call on #Israel to move swiftly with its investigation,” Nickolay Mladenov tweeted

Human rights groups have criticised previous Israeli army investigations into potential war crimes carried out in the Gaza Strip

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