Salah Husseini

Class Year


Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 2007


The most widely publicized environmental consequence of the war was Israel’s attack on the Jiyyeh power plant, located south of Beirut. A report by the United Nations Environmental Programme (“UNEP”) stated that up to “75,000 cubic met[ers] of heavy fuel oil could have been burned, spilled or leaked into the ground after the Israeli air raids of 13 and 15 July 2006, though the exact amount is still unknown.” The attack resulted in the spill of 15,000 cubic meters of oil, which spread across the Mediterranean coast, reaching the Syrian coastal city of Tartus to the north and Tyre in the south. Approximately 150 kilometers of Lebanon’s coastline, out of a total 220 kilometers, was directly affected by this spill. That Israel targeted the plant on three separate occasions and had even threatened to bomb the power plant again clearly indicates that Israel’s attack against the plant was willful and deliberate, and therefore could constitute a war crime based on principles of international humanitarian law (“IHL”), due to the civilian-use nature of the plant.