Practice Relating to Rule 7. The Principle of Distinction between Civilian Objects and Military Objectives
Section B. Attacks against military objectives
Israel’s Manual on the Rules of Warfare (2006) states:
In any attack, it is a duty to ensure that:
- The attack is directed against specific military targets;
- Weapon systems are used exclusively against military targets.
The Manual on the Rules of Warfare (2006) is a second edition of the Manual on the Laws of War (1998).
In 2009, in a report on Israeli operations in Gaza between 27 December 2008 and 18 January 2009 (the “Gaza Operation”, also known as “Operation Cast Lead”), Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated: “Only military targets shall be attacked.”
[footnote in original omitted]
In July 2010, in a second update of its July 2009 report on Israeli operations in Gaza between 27 December 2008 and 17 January 2009, Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated: “The principle of distinction is a core element of IDF standing orders. All IDF soldiers are instructed that strikes are to be directed only against legitimate military targets”.