2014 Gaza Conflict: Factual and Legal Aspects

The 2014 Gaza Conflict: Factual and Legal Aspects

Executive summary


The 2014 Gaza Conflict was a peak in the ongoing armed conflict waged against Israel for over a decade by terrorist organisations operating from the Gaza Strip. This Report provides information so that others may reach an informed understanding of the reasons for the Conflict and the actions of the parties thereto.
The 2014 Gaza Conflict: Factual and Legal Aspects - The Full Report
On July 7, 2014, the Government of Israel ordered the Israel Defense Forces to launch an aerial operation against Hamas and other terrorist organisations in the Gaza Strip. This operation, termed “Operation Protective Edge”, was launched in response to increasing rocket and mortar fire on Israel from the Gaza Strip during June and early July 2014, and despite Israel's continued efforts at de-escalation.

On July 17, 2014, as a result of Hamas's continued rejection of ceasefire initiatives, ongoing rocket and mortar fire and the execution of attacks in Israeli territory by sea and through cross-border assault tunnels, the Government of Israel authorized the entry of ground forces into a limited area of the Gaza Strip. These ground forces were tasked with identifying and neutralizing the cross-border assault tunnels, which originated from the outskirts of the urban areas of the Gaza Strip. The ground forces withdrew from the Gaza Strip on August 5, after locating and neutralising 32 cross-border assault tunnels, and despite ongoing rocket and mortar attacks against Israel. The 2014 Gaza Conflict concluded on August 26, with an unconditional ceasefire between Israel and Hamas.

The Full Report comprises official documents concerning factual and legal aspects of the 2014 Gaza Conflict. These documents provide information on the following topics:

  • background to the armed conflict that Hamas has waged against Israel for over a decade; the circumstances that led Israel to launch Operation Protective Edge;
  • the effect of Hamas's attacks on Israel's civilian population and Israel's civil defense measures;
  • the tactics of Hamas and other terrorist organizations during the conflict and their violations of international law;
  • detailed factual and legal information concerning the actions of the IDF during the conflict, including the steps taken before and during the conflict to ensure Israel's compliance with the Law of Armed Conflict; and
  • Israel's examination and investigation mechanism for dealing with alleged misconduct by IDF forces.

Executive Summary

Chapter I: Introduction

Chapter II: The Background to the 2014 Gaza Conflict

Chapter III: Israel's Objectives and Phases of the 2014 Gaza Conflict

Chapter IV: Hamas's Violations of the Law and War Crimes

Chapter V: The Threat to Israel's Civilian Population and Israel’s Civil Defence Measures

Chapter VI: IDF Conduct During the 2014 Gaza Conflict

Chapter VII: Israel's Investigation of Alleged Violations of the Law of Armed Conflict

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