Arab Organisation for Human Rights in the UK (AOHR UK) has called on the UK’s Counterterrorism and Major Crime Division, SO15, to investigate the enlistment of reservist soldiers with dual British-Israeli nationality, who join their military units to participate in the war waged by Israel against the residents of the Gaza Strip.
AOHR UK highlighted that numerous media reports have spoken about Britons joining the Israeli army since Israel announced the call-up of reserve soldiers from all over the world to participate in military operations against the Gaza Strip.
AOHR UK added that many of these individuals’ names have been published in the media, stating they are going to participate in military operations despite clear evidence that Israel has been committing war crimes since October 7th that are described under international humanitarian law as war crimes.
AOHR UK stressed that what encouraged these individuals to travel and participate in these crimes is the stance of the British government and the statements of the British Prime Minister and other ministers in the government, which gave the green light to the Israeli government to do everything without any red lines in its war on the Gaza Strip.
AOHR UK pointed out that the British government and law enforcement agencies have been preoccupied with demonstrations opposing the war on Gaza and pursuing activists to the extent that the Home Secretary has directed to prevent the raising of the Palestinian flag. Meanwhile, the government, in addition to its statements supporting Israel’s crimes, has allowed the flow of lethal weapons to Israel and has not warned those travelling to Israel to participate in the fighting that they are violating the law.
It is infuriating and condemnable that a force from the British police raided the home of Dr. Ghassan Abu Sitta in the UK, terrifying his wife and three children, while Abu Sitta plays his humanitarian role in saving hundreds of the wounded arriving at the Al-Shifa Medical Complex in Gaza. According to Abu Sitta, the police came to ask, “Who paid for the travel ticket and with which charity I work?” Abu Sitta wondered, “Isn’t my family’s concern for me because of the bombings enough without the police adding to their worries?”
Abu Sitta has appeared since the events of October 7th on Western and Arab media outlets from the Al-Shifa Medical Complex in Gaza, discussing the dire medical situation in the area, and how he and his colleagues are performing surgeries for the wounded amidst Israeli shelling near the hospital and recent threats to bomb it, all while facing shortages of equipment and medical supplies.
AOHR UK emphasized that law enforcement should have raided the homes of those intending to travel to fight with an army committing war crimes. Instead, they were allowed to travel freely, sharing their stories in the British media as if they were going on a mere excursion.
The crimes committed by Israel against the residents of the Gaza Strip are as clear as day, and anyone supporting the occupation forces in any way is considered complicit in these crimes. The death toll from these crimes has exceeded 8000, with thousands injured, and more than 70% of the population displaced, in addition to the suffocating blockade causing a lack of food, drinking water, medical supplies, fuel, and the collapse of health and service facilities.
We urge law enforcement agencies in the UK, across Europe, and worldwide to implement legal provisions criminalizing anyone who commits, participates in, or belongs to a formation that commits these crimes. It is the duty of these agencies to pursue anyone who has travelled or tries to travel to participate with the occupation forces in the extermination of the residents of the Gaza Strip.
We call on all human rights organisations worldwide to gather information about all the recruits who joined the Israeli occupation army to work on prosecuting them before the judiciary and holding them accountable according to the laws of each country.