'Israel used “bunker buster” bombs made by a US arms company in two attacks on Gaza in which civilians were killed last month.
The deadly strikes occurred in intense violence between 4 and 6 May during which 25 Palestinians, half of them civilians, and four civilians in Israel were killed.
Remnants of the GBU-39 series guided “small diameter” bomb manufactured by Boeing were found by Human Rights Watch at the site of the Zoroub building in Rafah, southern Gaza. Three civilians were killed in an Israeli attack on the six-story commercial building on 5 May.
Ahmad Zoroub, a relative of the building’s owner, was sitting in a basement cafe with two friends when the building was hit by three munitions. Ahmad survived but his companions, Mousa Muammar, 35, and Hani Abu Shaar, 37, did not.
Also killed in the attack was Ali Abd al-Jawad, an English teacher who had been present at the tutoring center he operated on the ground floor of the building when it was hit.
Minutes after the attack on the Zoroub building, according to Human Rights Watch, “the Israeli military said on Twitter that it attacked ‘terrorist operatives’ in south Gaza, but did not say what or where the targets may have been.”
“Three local residents said that Islamic Jihad had a media office on the second floor, but one noted that the office had moved to a different location months before,” Human Rights Watch states. The owner of the building told the rights group that the Palestinian resistance group did not have an office there.
“Human Rights Watch uncovered no evidence of a current military objective.”
Pregnant woman killed
Weapon remnants found at a destroyed residential building in Beit Lahiya, northern Gaza, were also determined by Human Rights Watch to be from a GBU-39 bomb.
The three-unit residential building was, like the Zoroub building, attacked by Israel on 5 May. Abdallah al-Madhoun, a member of Islamic Jihad’s armed wing, was killed in the strike, as well as his father, Abd al-Rahim, 60; his 36-year-old sister-in-law, Amani al-Madhoun, who was nine months pregnant; and his brother-in-law Fadi Badran, 33.
Human Rights Watch contends that because he was an operative with Islamic Jihad’s armed wing, Abdallah al-Madhoun was a “a valid military target,” though its report states he was praying at his father’s home when he was killed.'
Read more: Bombs made by Chicago company killed Gaza civilians
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