Sunday, April 19, 2009

Israel Won't Work with UN's Gaza War Crimes Probe

The Jerusalem Post, April 15, 2009 - Israel will not cooperate with a UN Human Rights Council investigation into whether war crimes were committed during Operation Cast Lead earlier this year, a Foreign Ministry source said Wednesday evening....

Jerusalem views the Geneva-based UN Council as badly biased against Israel. For instance, in its three years of existence, the council has passed 32 resolutions, 26 of them against Israel. The Foreign Ministry official said the move not to cooperate was made after it was determined that the Human Rights Council's decision to set up the investigation was "one-sided" against Israel. The official pointed out that Israel had cooperated earlier with a UN team set up by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon investigating allegations that the IDF had shelled UNRWA facilities in the Gaza Strip.

In New York, Human Rights Watch on Tuesday urged both sides to cooperate with the investigation because it will be led by Richard Goldstone, a widely respected South African judge and former chief UN prosecutor of war crimes in Yugoslavia and Rwanda.

Human Rights Watch noted that it had criticized the UN Rights Council in the past "for its exclusive focus on Israeli rights violations."

However, Goldstone has the "experience and proven commitment to ensure that this inquiry will demonstrate the highest standards of impartiality," the group wrote to US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and 27 European foreign ministers....

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