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UN backs alleged Israeli-Hamas war crimes probe

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UN backs alleged Israeli-Hamas war crimes probe


The United Nations Human Rights Council has voted to endorse a report into Israel’s recent assault on the Hamas run Gaza Strip.

Judge Richard Goldstone led the UN investigation into Israel’s three week military operation codenamed “Cast Lead.” His probe calls for the UN Security Council to pass the matter on to the International Criminal Court if the Israelis or Hamas fail to investigate alleged war crimes abuses.

Julie de Rivero, is from the Human Rights Watch: “Delegations disagree about how those investigations or how we should go about holding accountable the parties, so some think that this should be referred to the Security Council, to the International Criminal Court, and others think that it should be done domestically and that the Human Rights Council should be the only UN body concerned. So the controversy is there. But the message that investigations are needed and that there must be justice for victims is collective and there has been consensus around that message.”

The United States voted against the report along with Israel in a vote that was passed 25 to six with 11 abstentions. Israeli President Shimon Peres was steadfast in his opposition to the findings, “We do not need outside judges. We will not allow a majority that is hostile to Israel to judge us.” As many as 1,400 Palentinians were killed during the offensive, 13 Israelis lost their lives. The report also accused Palestinian groups, including Hamas, of deliberately targeting Jewish civilians in rocket attacks on southern Israel.
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