Amnesty International: Hamas Committed War Crimes Against Gaza Civilians

GAZA (Reuters) -

Amnesty International said in a report on Wednesday that Hamas committed war crimes against Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip during last year’s war with Israel.

“Hamas forces carried out a brutal campaign of abductions, torture and unlawful killings against Palestinians accused of ‘collaborating’ with Israel and others,” the human rights group’s report said. Some 23 Palestinians were shot and killed and dozens more were arrested and tortured by Hamas, according to the London-based group.

A Hamas spokesman claimed the report was unfair, unprofessional and not credible.

“The report is dedicated against Palestinian resistance and the Hamas movement … it deliberately exaggerated its descriptions without listening to all sides and without making an effort to check the truthfulness of details and information,” said Fawzi Barhoum, a Hamas spokesman.

In a previous report in March, Amnesty also criticized Israel and accused it of war crimes during the conflict.

“The de facto Hamas administration granted its security forces free rein to carry out horrific abuses including against people in its custody. These spine-chilling actions, some of which amount to war crimes, were designed to exact revenge and spread fear across the Gaza Strip,” Amnesty said.