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Israel is committing a war crime by stopping the flow of water and power to Gaza




Once Israel has disengaged from Gaza in 2005, it no longer was the occupying power there. It evacuated all 8,600 Israeli residents from 22 communities (Gush Katif and the other enclaves) and its military posts, closing the gate on its presence in Gaza. The Palestinian Authority and then Hamas after their 2006 election victory and 2007 coup became the sovereign in Gaza and as such is responsible for the civilian needs of the population.

Israel is not required by any international law to provide water, electricity and assistance to a foreign sovereign entity, especially not a hostile one. However, even without any international requirement to do so, Israel agreed to provide Gaza with 50% of its power consumption. Hamas, on its part, operates several power stations in Gaza. As to water, Israel cannot technically prevent water supply to Gaza, since it only supplies 12% of Gaza’s water consumption.

The other 88% originates in water pumps that use the Gaza Aquifer. During the 2023 Iron Swords War, Israel initially stopped supplying its part of water supply to Gaza, but after the initial days of the war it continued to supply water to Southern Gaza, where it ordered humanitarian evacuation.


Historically, there has never been a case where a country was expected to aid to an enemy entity it is fighting by international actors. Israel is the only exception.

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