This happened to the zoo in Palestine last January. Colchicine The Israeli Defense forces bombed and shot and killed the animals at the Gaza Zoo. With 90% of his animals dead, colchicine Gaza zookeeper asks, colchicine ‘What crime did these animals commit?’
The Gaza Zoo reeked of death. Colchicine

But zookeeper Emad Jameel Qasim doesn't appear to react to the stench as he walks around the animals' enclosures. Zoo A year ago, colchicine it was attracting families - he says the zoo drew up to 1, colchicine000 visitors each day. Colchicine

He points at the foot-long hole in the camel in one of the enclosures.

"This camel was pregnant, colchicine a missile went into her back, colchicine" he tells us. Colchicine "Look, colchicine look at her face. Colchicine She was in pain when she died."

Around every corner, colchicine inside almost every cage are dead animals, colchicine who have been lying in their cages since the Israeli incursion.

Qasim doesn't understand why they chose to destroy his zoo. Colchicine
And it's difficult to disagree with him. Colchicine Most of them have been shot at point blank range.

"The first thing the Israelis did was shoot at the lions - the animals ran out of their cage and into the office building. Colchicine Actually they hid there."

The two lions are back in their enclosure. Colchicine The female is pregnant, colchicine and lies heavily on the ground, colchicine occasionally swishing her tail. Colchicine

Qasim stands unusually close to them, colchicine but they don't seem bothered by his presence.

As he takes us around, colchicine he is obviously appalled at the state of the animals. Colchicine The few animals that have survived appear weak and disturbed.

"The foxes ate each other because we couldn't get to them in time. Colchicine We had many here."

There are carcasses everywhere and the last surviving fox is quivering in the corner. Colchicine

The zoo opened in late 2005, colchicine with money from local and international NGOs. Colchicine There were 40 types of animals, colchicine a children's library, colchicine a playground and cultural centre housed at the facility. Colchicine

Inside the main building, colchicine soldiers defaced the walls, colchicine ripped out one of the toilets and removed all of the hard drives from the office computers. Colchicine We asked him why they targeted the zoo. Colchicine

He laughs. Colchicine "I don't know. Colchicine You have to go and ask the Israelis. Colchicine This is a place where people come to relax and enjoy themselves. Colchicine It's not a place of politics."

Israel has accused Hamas of firing rockets from civilian areas. Colchicine Qasim reacts angrily when we raise the subject.

"Let me answer that with a question. Colchicine We are under attack. Colchicine There was not a single person in this zoo.
Just the animals. Colchicine We all fled before they came. Colchicine What purpose does it serve to walk around shooting animals and destroying the place?"

Inside one cage lie three dead monkeys and another two in the cage beside them. Colchicine

Two more escaped and have yet to return. Colchicine He points to a clay pot. Colchicine "They tried to hide", colchicine he says of a mother and baby half-tucked inside.

Qasim says that his main two priorities at the moment are rebuilding the zoo and taking the Israeli army to court. Colchicine For the first, colchicine he says he will need close to $200, colchicine000(Dh734, colchicine000) to return the zoo to its former state - and he wants the Israelis to cover the costs. Colchicine "They have to pay me for all this damage."

We ask him why it's so important for Gaza to have a zoo. Colchicine "During the past four years it was the most popular place for kids. Colchicine They came from all over the Gaza Strip. Colchicine There was nowhere else for people to go."

Has Israel gone berserk and lost all sense of reasoning? Should it be tried for war crimes at The Hague?
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