Russia says Ukraine blocking gas transit to Europe

Russia says Ukraine blocking gas transit to

Europe

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin informed European Commission head Jose Manuel Barroso on Tuesday that Ukraine was blocking the transit of Russian natural gas to Europe.

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin informed European Commission head Jose Manuel Barroso on Tuesday that Ukraine was blocking the transit of Russian natural gas to Europe.

Gazprom gave the go-ahead at 10:00 a.m. Moscow time (07:00 a.m. GMT) on Tuesday to resume gas supplies to Europe via Ukraine, but Europe has not received any gas.

“The prime minister informed the European Commission president that Russian gas, supplies of which have been partially resumed, cannot enter Ukraine’s gas transit system, which is closed,” a Russian government spokesman said.

Barroso expressed a willingness to discuss the problem with the Ukrainian government.

“We have informed the European Commission that we have no real possibility of shipping gas,” Gazprom’s deputy CEO Alexander Medvedev said during a phone conference with foreign media.

“We get the impression that Ukraine was not planning to comply with its commitments under the agreement signed and open its network for gas transit,” Medvedev added.

He also accused Ukraine of failing to provide Russian monitors with access to underground gas storage facilities and control stations, a requirement fixed in a trilateral gas monitoring deal signed on Monday by the European Commission.

The Commission’s Energy Spokesman Ferran Tarradellas Espuny said on Tuesday observers had still not received full access to monitoring stations in both Moscow and Kiev, and urged the resumption of gas supplies to Europe as soon as possible.

A source in the international monitoring commission said Russian gas intended for transit to Europe could not enter Ukraine’s pipeline network because the taps were turned off.

Another source close to the Ukrainian energy company Naftogaz said that Gazprom had failed to provide sufficient volumes of gas to allow transit to Europe via Ukraine’s network, Ukraine’s UNIAN news agency said.

Naftogaz spokesman Valentin Zemlyanskiy cited Russia’s “unacceptable transit conditions” as the reason for blocking its natural gas supplies.

Earlier in the day, Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko ordered controls on Ukraine’s gas transportation system to be tightened following the resumption of gas transits to Europe from Russia. He also sent a corresponding letter to the country’s interior ministry, security council, and emergencies ministry.

“Due to the resumption of natural gas supplies to Western Europe by the Russian Federation, I am requesting you, within your competence and the existing legislation, to take measures to prevent unexpected situations arising on the Ukrainian gas transportation network,” the letter said.

The EU gets some 25% of its gas from Russia – 80% of which passes through Ukraine.

Gaza clinics destroyed by raids

Gaza clinics destroyed by raids

By Donald Macintyre

Israeli warplanes have attacked two fully equipped medical clinics in Gaza, causing hundreds of thousands of dollars of damage, the Christian organisations which fund them reported yesterday. The Catholic relief group Caritas said its clinic in the al-Meghazi area of Gaza had been “completely destroyed” by a missile on Friday, and that 20 nearby homes had been damaged. Because local families had already fled their homes, no one was hurt, Caritas said, but equipment worth $10,000 (£6,700) was lost.

Twenty-fours later, another clinic funded by Christian Aid was also demolished in an air strike; it followed a telephone warning to the building’s owners to leave within 15 minutes. Janet Symes, Christian Aid’s head of Middle East Region, said the clinic had “standing room” only for mothers bringing their children for check-ups when she visited it last year. She added: “Now the whole clinic lies in ruins.”

Little more than a sixth of the 1,200 Egyptian hospital beds being reserved for injured Palestinians have been filled, despite estimates that more than 4,000 have been wounded. With a World Health Organisation report saying that Gaza City’s Shifa Hospital remains “overwhelmed”, the dangers of evacuating

patients through southern Gaza have severely reduced the flow of patients to hospitals in Egypt. The Red Cross has decided to keep its evacuations under review after one of its lorries was shot at by Israeli troops.

Advantages of slaughter

Advantages of slaughter

There are a few advantages coming out of the slaughter:

  1. Jewish apologists no longer have any possible ammunition to argue against academic boycotts, as the Israeli version of a boycott is a bomb dropped on a university or school.
  2. There is nothing bad you can say about Israel or Jewish support for Israel, no comparison you can make to the worst holocausts in history, that can live up to the blood-dripping from-the fangs evil. Israel and the Jewish people – and Jewish support for the Palestinian holocaust puts the full blame on the Jewish people – are as evil as it gets, and everybody knows it.
  3. I’ve been called an anti-Semite for daring to speak of Jew-controlled politicians and Jew-controlled media. No more of that. I blame the crypto-Zionist ‘progressives’ for much of the horror, all because they couldn’t accept the truth about Jew control and wanted to show off how ‘progressive’ they were. When every mainstream media outlet and every major politician spouts exactly the same made-in-Israel words, words that are patently bullshit, which everybody knows are patently bullshit, and in direct contradiction to the knowledge and understanding of the vast majority of the population (less vast, of course, where decades of Jew-controlled media malfeasance have misled the people), there is only one possible explanation: Jew control. Let’s shout it, unapologetically, from the rooftops. I await the abject apologies from everybody who has accused me of being an anti-Semite.
  4. Sanctions, divestment and boycotting are now commonly discussed, and millions of people are now newly politically aware, and mobilized, on the issue. The demonstrations in Europe were amazing and, again, highlight Jew-control, as the Jew-slave politicians are so obviously out of line with their electorates. One would hope that the mass realization that both the mainstream media and all major politicians have been bought and paid for by World Jewry would lead to a further realization that these lying Jew-slaves need to be replaced, pronto.
  5. We’re witnessing the death of the Chomskean lie that all political evil flows out of the United States. While the Bush Administration, in its death throes, has managed one final embarrassment to the United States (one for which Americans will be paying for decades), this one is entirely to be blamed on Israel and World Jewry. Again, while acknowledging the evil of the United States in blessing this monstrosity, everybody knows who is really to blame.

We can’t forget that the slaughter is encouraging a deep examination of the psycho-killer psychology of Israel and World Jewry, which, just as in the case of many psychopaths, is tinged with self-righteousness. An example of the new analysis is Gideon Levy:

“You can’t have it both ways. The only ‘purity’ in this war is the ‘purification from terrorists,’ which really means the sowing of horrendous tragedies. What’s happening in Gaza is not a natural disaster, an earthquake or flood, for which it would be our duty and right to extend a helping hand to those affected, to send rescue squads, as we so love to do. Of all the rotten luck, all the disasters now occurring in Gaza are manmade – by us. Aid cannot be offered with bloodstained hands. Compassion cannot sprout from brutality.

Yet there are some who still want it both ways. To kill and destroy indiscriminately and also to come out looking good, with a clean conscience. To go ahead with war crimes without any sense of the heavy guilt that should accompany them. It takes some nerve. Anyone who justifies this war also justifies all its crimes. Anyone who preaches for this war and believes in the justness of the mass killing it is inflicting has no right whatsoever to speak about morality and humaneness. There is no such thing as simultaneously killing and nurturing. This attitude is a faithful representation of the basic, twofold Israeli sentiment that has been with us forever: To commit any wrong, but to feel pure in our own eyes. To kill, demolish, starve, imprison and humiliate – and be right, not to mention righteous. The righteous warmongers will not be able to allow themselves these luxuries.

Anyone who justifies this war also justifies all its crimes. Anyone who sees it as a defensive war must bear the moral responsibility for its consequences. Anyone who now encourages the politicians and the army to continue will also have to bear the mark of Cain that will be branded on his forehead after the war. All those who support the war also support the horror.”

Self-righteousness is the defining characteristic of Zionism (just read anything by Dershowitz; it is almost funny). They won’t be able to get away with it any more.

The final advantage of the slaughter is that people are finally considering what is to be done to Israel to punish it for what it habitually does – another advantage of the slaughter is that the entire history of Zionism is being reanalyzed as part of a pattern of psychopathic murderous compulsion – and stop it from reoffending.

A note of caution. The lite Zionists are gearing up to protect Zionism by ensuring that the sanctions on Israel amount to no more than ineffective boycotts (especially so as boycotting Israel is illegal in the United States). They will purport to be outraged, and purport to be dealing with the problem, all the while doing what they always do – protecting the project of Greater Israel which they all secretly support. We can’t let them get away with this. We now know that Zionism is an incurable violent psychological illness, and Israel will not stop murdering. Zionism has to be stopped. Permanently. The only way to accomplish this is to make a Jewish state in the Middle East impossible. We need to be figuring how to do this in the most humanitarian way, while acknowledging that there will inevitably be millions of Jewish refugees. As terrible as that is, Israel and World Jewry have made it necessary.

Zionists Have to Learn That Killing Hundreds of Children Makes the Humane World Hate You

Israel feels hurt by global condemnation
Tue, 13 Jan 2009 11:46:09 GMT

An Orthodox Jew blows his Shofar, as Israeli artillery shells Gaza. The high number of casualties in the densely-populated strip has provoked indescribable condemnation of the Israeli operation.

Israel’s foreign minister expresses Tel Aviv’s grave concern over “a wave of anti-Semitism” sparked by the Israeli offensive in Gaza.

In a statement released by her office on Monday, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni expressed “Israel’s concern about the current wave of anti-Semitic attacks in various parts of the world.”

Israel’s 17-day-old offensive in the Gaza Strip has so far claimed the lives of at least 919 Palestinians, while some 4,100 others have been wounded.

UN figures show that the majority of casualties and injuries are civilian.

The operation has sparked widespread outrage around the globe, with many people and leaders condemning the Israeli acts and urging for an immediate halt in bombardment of the densely-populated strip.

“We have received with great concern and revulsion many reports of physical, moral, verbal and other manifestations of anti-Semitic attacks towards Jews and Israeli citizens in many parts of the world,” read the foreign ministry statement, according to AFP.

Tel Aviv launched Operation Cast Lead on Dec. 27 to put an end to rocket attacks against southern Israel.

At least 10 Israeli soldiers have been killed by resistance fighters in Gaza, while three Israelis have died in retaliatory rocket attacks by the Hamas movement.

The UN Security Council adopted a resolution on Thursday, calling for an immediate end to the ongoing crisis. Both sides, however, have rejected the resolution.

Hamas, the democratically-elected ruler of the impoverished Gaza Strip, demands a cessation of an 18-month Israeli blockade on the coastal enclave — home to some 1.5 million Palestinians — before its fighters suspend retaliatory rocket attacks.

Eliyahu advocates carpet bombing Gaza

Eliyahu advocates carpet bombing Gaza

May. 30, 2007
Matthew Wagner , THE JERUSALEM POST

All civilians living in Gaza are collectively guilty for Kassam attacks on Sderot, former Sephardi chief rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu has written in a letter to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

Eliyahu ruled that there was absolutely no moral prohibition against the indiscriminate killing of civilians during a potential massive military offensive on Gaza aimed at stopping the rocket launchings.

The letter, published in Olam Katan [Small World], a weekly pamphlet to be distributed in synagogues nationwide this Friday, cited the biblical story of the Shechem massacre (Genesis 34) and Maimonides’ commentary (Laws of Kings 9, 14) on the story as proof texts for his legal decision.

According to Jewish war ethics, wrote Eliyahu, an entire city holds collective responsibility for the immoral behavior of individuals. In Gaza, the entire populace is responsible because they do nothing to stop the firing of Kassam rockets.

The former chief rabbi also said it was forbidden to risk the lives of Jews in Sderot or the lives of IDF soldiers for fear of injuring or killing Palestinian noncombatants living in Gaza.

Eliyahu could not be reached for an interview. However, Eliyahu’s son, Shmuel Eliyahu, who is chief rabbi of Safed, said his father opposed a ground troop incursion into Gaza that would endanger IDF soldiers. Rather, he advocated carpet bombing the general area from which the Kassams were launched, regardless of the price in Palestinian life.

“If they don’t stop after we kill 100, then we must kill a thousand,” said Shmuel Eliyahu. “And if they do not stop after 1,000 then we must kill 10,000. If they still don’t stop we must kill 100,000, even a million. Whatever it takes to make them stop.”

In the letter, Eliyahu quoted from Psalms. “I will pursue my enemies and apprehend them and I will not desist until I have eradicated them.”

Eliyahu wrote that “This is a message to all leaders of the Jewish people not to be compassionate with those who shoot [rockets] at civilians in their houses.”

Who will save Israel from itself?

OPINION: WAR ON GAZA

Who will save Israel from itself?

The Israeli government’s justifications for the war are being scrutinised [GALLO/GETTY]

One by one the justifications given by Israel for its latest war in Gaza are unravelling.The argument that this is a purely defensive war, launched only after Hamas broke a six-month ceasefire has been challenged, not just by observers in the know such as Jimmy Carter, the former US president who helped facilitate the truce, but by centre-right Israeli intelligence think tanks.

The Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center, whose December 31 report titled “Six Months of the Lull Arrangement Intelligence Report,” confirmed that the June 19 truce was only “sporadically violated, and then not by Hamas but instead by … “rogue terrorist organisations”.

Instead, “the escalation and erosion of the lull arrangement” occurred after Israel killed six Hamas members on November 4 without provocation and then placed the entire Strip under an even more intensive siege the next day.

According to a joint Tel Aviv University-European University study, this fits a larger pattern in which Israeli violence has been responsible for ending 79 per cent of all lulls in violence since the outbreak of the second intifada, compared with only 8 per cent for Hamas and other Palestinian factions. Indeed, the Israeli foreign ministry seems to realise that this argument is losing credibility.

During a conference call with half a dozen pro-Israel professors on Thursday, Asaf Shariv, the Consul General of Israel in New York, focused more on the importance of destroying the intricate tunnel system connecting Gaza to the Sinai.

He claimed that such tunnels were “as big as the Holland and Lincoln tunnels,” and offered as proof the “fact” that lions and monkeys had been smuggled through them to a zoo in Gaza. In reality, the lions were two small cubs that were drugged, thrown in sacks, and dragged through a tunnel on their way to a private zoo.

Israel’s self-image

The claim that Hamas will never accept the existence of Israel has proved equally misinformed, as Hamas leaders explicitly announce their intention to do just that in the pages of the Los Angeles Times or to any international leader or journalist who will meet with them.

With each new family, 10, 20 and 30 strong, buried under the rubble of a building in Gaza, the claim that the Israeli forces have gone out of their way to diminish civilian casualties – long a centre-piece of Israel’s image as an enlightened and moral democracy – is falling apart.

Anyone with an internet connection can Google “Gaza humanitarian catastrophe” and find the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in the Occupied Territories and read the thousands of pages of evidence documenting the reality of the current fighting, and the long term siege on Gaza that preceded it.

The Red Cross, normally scrupulous in its unwillingness to single out parties to a conflict for criticism, sharply criticised Israel for preventing medical personnel from reaching wounded Palestinians, some of whom remained trapped for days, slowly starving and dying in the Gazan rubble amidst their dead relatives.

Meanwhile, the United Nations has flatly denied Israeli claims that Palestinian fighters were using the UNRWA school compound bombed on January 6, in which 40 civilians were killed, to launch attacks, and has challenged Israel to prove otherwise.

War crimes admission

Additionally, numerous flippant remarks by senior Israeli politicians and generals, including Tzipi Livni, the foreign minister, refusing to make a distinction between civilian people and institutions and fighters – “Hamas doesn’t … and neither should we” is how Livni puts it – are rightly being seen as admissions of war crimes.

Indeed, in reviewing statements by Israeli military planners leading up to the invasion, it is clear that there was a well thought out decision to go after Gaza’s civilian infrastructure – and with it, civilians.

The following quote from an interview with Major-General Gadi Eisenkot that appeared in the Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth in October, is telling:

“We will wield disproportionate power against every village from which shots are fired on Israel, and cause immense damage and destruction. From our perspective these [the villages] are military bases,” he said.

“This isn’t a suggestion. This is a plan that has already been authorised.”

Causing “immense damage and destruction” and considering entire villages “military bases” is absolutely prohibited under international law.

Eisenkot’s description of this planning in light of what is now unfolding in Gaza is a clear admission of conspiracy and intent to commit war crimes, and when taken with the comments above, and numerous others, renders any argument by Israel that it has tried to protect civilians and is not engaging in disproportionate force unbelievable.

International laws violated

On the ground, the evidence mounts ever higher that Israel is systematically violating a host of international laws, including but not limited to Article 56 of the IV Hague Convention of 1907, the First Additional Protocol of the Geneva Convention, the Fourth Geneva Convention (more specifically known as the “Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War of 12 August 1949”, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and the principles of Customary International Humanitarian Law.

None of this excuses or legitimises the firing of rockets or mortars by any Palestinian group at Israeli civilians and non-military targets.

As Richard Falk, the UN special rapporteur, declared in his most recent statement on Gaza: “It should be pointed out unambiguously that there is no legal (or moral) justification for firing rockets at civilian targets, and that such behavior is a violation of IHR, associated with the right to life, as well as constitutes a war crime.”

By the same logic, however, Israel does not have the right to use such attacks as an excuse to launch an all-out assault on the entire population of Gaza.

In this context, even Israel’s suffering from the constant barrage of rockets is hard to pay due attention to when the numbers of dead and wounded on each side are counted. Any sense of proportion is impossible to sustain with such a calculus.

‘Rogue’ state

Israeli commentators and scholars, self-described “loyal” Zionists who served proudly in the army in wars past, are now publicly describing their country, in the words of Oxford University professor Avi Shlaim, as a “rogue” and gangster” state led by “completely unscrupulous leaders”.

Gazans inspect the damage after an air strike hit a mosque [GALLO/GETTY]

Neve Gordon, a politics professor at Ben Gurion University, has declared that Israel’s actions in Gaza are like “raising animals for slaughter on a farm” and represent a “bizarre new moral element” in warfare.

“The moral voice of restraint has been left behind … Everything is permitted” against Palestinians, writes a disgusted Haaretz columnist, Gideon Levy.

Fellow Haaretz columnist and daughter of Holocaust survivors, Amira Haas writes of her late parents disgust at how Israeli leaders justified Israel’s wars with a “language laundromat” aimed at redefining reality and Israel’s moral compass. “Lucky my parents aren’t alive to see this,” she exclaimed.

Around the world people are beginning to compare Israel’s attack on Gaza, which after the 2005 withdrawal of Israeli forces and settlers was turned literally into the world’s largest prison, to the Jewish uprising in the Warsaw Ghetto.

Extremist Muslims are using internet forums to collect names and addresses of prominent European Jews with the goal, it seems clear, of assassinating them in retaliation for Israel’s actions in Gaza.

Al-Qaeda is attempting to exploit this crisis to gain a foothold in Gaza and Palestinian refugee camps in Lebanon and Syria, as well as through attacking Jewish communities globally.

Iran’s defiance of both Israel and its main sponsor, the US, is winning it increasing sympathy with each passing day.

Democratic values eroded

Inside Israel, the violence will continue to erode both democratic values in the Jewish community, and any acceptance of the Jewish state’s legitimacy in the eyes of its Palestinian citizens.

And yet in the US – at least in Washington and in the offices of the mainstream Jewish organisations – the chorus of support for Israel’s war on Gaza continues to sing in tight harmony with official Israeli policy, seemingly deaf to the fact that they have become so out of tune with the reality exploding around them.

At my university, UCI, where last summer Jewish and Muslim students organised a trip together through the occupied territories and Israel so they could see with their own eyes the realities there, old battle lines are being redrawn.

The Anteaters for Israel, the college pro-Israel group at the University of California, Irvine, sent out an urgent email to the community explaining that, “Over the past week, increasing amounts of evidence lead us to believe that Hamas is largely responsible for any alleged humanitarian crisis in Gaza”.

I have no idea who the “us” is that is referred to in the appeal, although I am sure that the membership of that group is shrinking.

Indeed, one of the sad facts of this latest tragedy is that with each claim publicly refuted by facts on the ground, more and more Americans, including Jews, are refusing to trust the assertions of Israeli and American Jewish leaders.

Trap

Even worse, in the Arab/Muslim world, the horrific images pouring out of Gaza daily are allowing preachers and politicians to deploy well-worn yet still dangerous and inciteful stereotypes against Jews as they rally the masses against Israel – and through it – their own governments.

What is most frightening is that the most important of Israel’s so-called friends, the US political establishment and the mainstream Jewish leadership, seem clueless to the devastating trap that Israel has led itself into – in good measure with their indulgence and even help.

It is one that threatens the country’s existence far more than any Qassam rockets, with their 0.4 per cent kill rate; even more than the disastrous 2006 invasion of southern Lebanon, which by weakening Israel’s deterrence capability in some measure made this war inevitable.

First, it is clear that Israel cannot destroy Hamas, it cannot stop the rockets unless it agrees to a truce that will go far to meeting the primary demand of Hamas – an end to the siege.

Merely by surviving (and it surely will survive) Hamas, like Hezbollah in 2006, will have won.

Support for the war remains high in Israel[GALLO/GETTY]

Israel is succeeding in doing little more than creating another generation of Palestinians with hearts filled with rage and a need for revenge.

Second, Israel’s main patron, the US, along with the conservative Arab autocracies and monarchies that are its only allies left in the Muslim world, are losing whatever crumbs of legitimacy they still had with their young and angry populations.

The weaker the US and its axis becomes in the Middle East, the more precarious becomes Israel’s long-term security. Indeed, any chance that the US could convince the Muslim world to pressure Iran to give up its quest for nuclear weapons has been buried in Gaza.

Third, as Israel brutalises Palestinians, it brutalises its own people. You cannot occupy another people and engage in violence against them at this scale without doing even greater damage to your soul.

The high incidence of violent crimes committed by veterans returning from combat duty in Iraq is but one example of how the violence of occupation and war eat away at people’s moral centre.

While in the US only a small fraction of the population participates in war; in Israel, most able-bodied men end up participating.

The effects of the latest violence perpetrated against Palestinians upon the collective Israeli soul is incalculable; the notion that it can survive as an “ethnocracy” – favouring one ethnic group, Jews, yet by and large democratic – is becoming a fiction.

Violence-as-power

Who will save Israel from herself?

Israelis are clearly incapable. Their addiction as a society to the illusion of violence-as-power has reached the level of collective mental illness.

As Haaretz reporter Yossi Melman described it on January 10, “Israel has created an image of itself of a madman that has lost it”.

Not Palestinians, too many of whom have fallen prey to the same condition.

Not the Middle East Quartet, the European Union, the United Nations, or the Arab League, all of whom are utterly powerless to influence Israeli policy.

Not the organised Jewish leadership in the US and Europe, who are even more blind to what is happening than most Israelis, who at least allow internal debate about the wisdom of their government’s policies.

Not the growing progressive Jewish community, which will need years to achieve enough social and political power to challenge the status quo.

And not senior American politicians and policy-makers who are either unwilling to risk alienating American Jewish voters, or have been so brainwashed by the constant barrage of propaganda put out by the “Israel Lobby” that they are incapable of reaching an independent judgment about the conflict.

During the US presidential race, Barack Obama was ridiculed for being a messiah-like figure. The idea does not sound so funny now. It is hard to imagine anyone less saving Israel, the Palestinians, and the world from another four years of mindless violence.

Update: In a further challenge to the democratic process in Israel, on January 12, the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported that the Central Elections Committee had voted overwhelmingly to bar Arab-led parties from participating in the upcoming parliamentary elections.

Also, there are reports that the claim that extremist Muslims are using the internet to collect names and addresses of prominent British Jews in order to attack them, might in fact have been a hoax.

Gaza now Israeli weapons testing lab?

Gaza now Israeli weapons testing lab?
Tue, 13 Jan 2009 12:11:25 GMT

Israeli soldiers prepare their tanks on the Israeli side of Gaza border before rolling into the coastal sliver. Medics say the army might be testing new weapons in the densely-populated Gaza Strip.

Israel has turned Gaza into a research laboratory to test out its new “extremely nasty” weapons on Palestinians, a medical expert says.

After working for 10 days at the Shifa Hospital in the war-torn Palestinian territory, Dr. Mads Gilbert, a member of a Norwegian triage medical team in Gaza, blasted Israel for conducting experimental military work in the impoverished strip.

“There’s a very strong suspicion I think that Gaza is now being used as a test laboratory for new weapons,” Gilbert told reporters at Oslo’s Gardermoen airport upon his return home on Monday.

Dr. Gilbert said the kinds of injuries he and his colleague Erik Fosse had seen during their ten-day aid work in Gaza had proven that Dense Inert Metal Explosives (DIME) was being used in the embattled territory.

DIME, which is an experimental kind of explosive, is believed to have strong biological effects in those who are hit by the “low lethality” weapons.

Survivors close to the lethal range may have their limbs amputated as their soft tissues and bones are shredded to pieces. The victims may also subsequently contract cancer from the micro-shrapnel embedded in their body tissue within just four to six months.

“This is a new generation of very powerful small explosives that detonates with an extreme power and dissipates its power within a range of five to 10 meters (16-98 feet),” said Gilbert.

“We have not seen the casualties affected directly by the bomb because they are normally torn to pieces and do not survive, but we have seen a number of very brutal amputations… without shrapnel injuries which we strongly suspect must have been caused by the DIME weapons,” he added.

The weapon “causes the tissue to be torn from the flesh. It looks very different (from a shrapnel injury). I have seen and treated a lot of different injuries for the last 30 years in different war zones, and this looks completely different,” said Fosse, 58.

“If you are in the immediate (vicinity of) a DIME weapon, it’s like your legs get torn off. It’s an enormous pressure wave and there is no shrapnel,” he explained.

Israel had also used the weapon in the 2006 war with Lebanon and previously in Gaza.

“We are not soft-skinned when it comes to war injuries, but these amputations are really extremely nasty and for many of the patients not survivable,” he added.

Following reports on the use of suspected chemical weapons in Gaza, the United Nations Human Rights Council decided to dispatch a fact-finding mission to investigate human rights violations committed in the territory.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said on Tuesday that “Accountability must be ensured for violations of international law,” suggesting that the Council consider a mission to assess violations committed by both sides in the conflict.

The latest casualty figures according to Health officials have topped 940 since the operation began on 27 December, while some 4,400 others have been wounded.

Senior United Nations officials have expressed grave concern about reports that over 40 per cent of the Palestinians killed in the Israeli offensive, and almost half of the wounded, are women and children.

The new report comes on top of earlier reports which revealed the Israeli military had used controversial white phosphorus shells on Gazans.

The Times said on Thursday that it had identified stockpiles of M825A1, a US-made White Phosphorus munition, from high-resolution pictures taken from Israeli artillery units on the Gaza border.

A phenomenon characteristic of the chemical — also known by the military as WP or Willie Pete is that it can burn through flesh to the bone and leave bodies “entirely shriveled with black-green skin.”

Earlier last week, Gilbert’s team, told Press TV that medics had found depleted uraniumin some Gaza residents.

The reports of profound human sufferings come as Israel continues to reject the fact that it has imposed a humanitarian crisis among the battle-hardened 1.5 million population of Gaza.