Video emerged Monday of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) destroying a lavish structure in Gaza known as the Palace of Justice, built by Qatar in 2018 and used by Hamas to administer justice to residents — including executions of suspected collaborators.
The IDF’s Nahal infantry brigade had taken control of the building in earlier fighting.
A picture circulating online shows troops of the IDF’s Nahal Brigade at the Gaza Strip’s main courthouse, after capturing the site. pic.twitter.com/Jr0M6m9zKz
— Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian (@manniefabian) November 20, 2023
It was destroyed in a controlled demolition.
The IDF demolished Hamas’s main courthouse.
Gaza Strip courts followed the approach of mitigating punishment for perpetrators of honour killings if it was proved that the murder was committed on the grounds of honour, according to a UN report. pic.twitter.com/Vc2K4MaLAL
— Visegrád 24 (@visegrad24) December 4, 2023
The structure was opened in 2018, with Qatari representatives present:
The Qatari envoy yesterday inaugurated the Justice Palace complex in the central Gaza Strip.
Qatari Ambassador Mohamed Al-Emadi, head of the National Committee for the Reconstruction of Gaza, launched the 11 dunam (2.7 acre) site which cost $11 million to build and comprises the Supreme Judicial Council, the Supreme Court, as well as Appeal, First Instance and Reconciliation courts.Abdul Raouf Al-Halabi, president of the Supreme Council of the Judiciary in the Gaza Strip, praised Qatar’s efforts to complete the project and its continued support to the Palestinian people.
At the time, residents of Gaza criticized the building, saying that the population had more urgent needs than an expensive public building:
[I]n a besieged enclave where nearly 80 per cent of the population depends on donor aid and youth unemployment is over 60 per cent, critics asked whether the money might have been better spent elsewhere.
“Gazans would have felt more justice if the building’s budget was given to labourers and university graduates to start small-scale businesses,” Al Aqsa University Islamic history lecturer Hani al-Jazzar told The National.
“Hundreds of families sleep on the cold floor and cannot provide for themselves,” wrote Mohammed Hassna, former Director of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation in Palestine, while “the Justice Palace is being prioritised in a place where justice is largely absent.”
The U.S. Sun reported on what “justice” meant at the court:
The military court regularly issued death sentences to people found guilty of “collaboration” with Israel, including seven in August who allegedly informed on terror groups in Gaza.
Hamas has practised capital punishment in the Strip since the group assumed power in 2007 and continuously carried out executions without permission from the Palestinian Authority – despite it being a requirement, under Palestinian law, to get approval for executions.
Israel has continued pressing its offensive into the Gaza Strip, determined to end Hamas’s ability to govern and to conduct military operations.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the new biography, Rhoda: ‘Comrade Kadalie, You Are Out of Order’. He is also the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.
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