Israeli forces digging up cemetery graves and stealing bodies, Gaza government says

By The New Arab Staff

Gaza bodies

Gaza‘s government media office has accused the Israeli military of stealing the bodies of some 150 people from a cemetery in the east of the Palestinian enclave.

In a statement released Saturday, the media office said Israeli forces used bulldozers to dig up some 1,100 graves at the Al-Tuffah cemetery and steal the bodies.

The graves have been taken to an unknown location, raising suspicions that organs could be stolen from them, the statement said.

The office called the exhumation of graves and theft of dead bodies “a heinous crime”.

Since launching its war on Gaza on 7 October, Israel has been accused on multiple occasions both of digging up graves of dead Palestinians and of stealing organs from bodies.

Gaza authorities said at the end of December that they had received from Israeli forces the bodies of killed Palestinians which had shown signs of theft of organs.

In its statement, the government media office pointed to suspected theft of bodies in Rafah and in Jabalia.

The Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor said in November that it had documented theft by Israeli forces of bodies from hospitals in Gaza.

Israel has killed almost 23,000 people in its onslaught on Gaza, which has now lasted three months.

With the Palestinian territory suffering intensive bombardment and huge casualty numbers in such a short period of time, many of the bodies of those killed are being buried hurriedly in mass graves.

Thousands of Palestinians are missing, the vast majority of them believed to be buried under rubble.

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