Israeli army refutes accusations

A B’Tselem report stating that more than half the Palestinian casualties during Israel’s Gaza offensive were civilians is “not based on facts or on accurate statistics,” the Israeli army said.

The Israel Defense Forces spokesman’s office claimed that B’Tselem used information obtained from the militant wings of terror organizations and that of the Palestinian Police.

The Israeli human rights group released a report Sept. 9 saying that Israel’s military killed 1,387 Palestinians during Operation Cast Lead in December and January, of which 773 were civilians, including 320 minors and 109 women older than 18.

The report said that 330 of the casualties were combatants and 248 were Palestinian police officers. The organization could not account for 36 of the dead.

The Research Division of the IDF Defense Intelligence reported six months ago that there were 1,166 Palestinian casualties in the Gaza offensive, of which 709 were terror operatives affiliated with Hamas and other terror groups. The IDF said 295 of the dead were civilians, including 89 minors and 49 women older than 18. — jta