< HOME  Friday, October 16, 2009

UNHRC endorses Goldstone report, angers israel

The UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) has adopted a resolution, endorsing the Goldstone report on the Gaza war, despite efforts by Israeli leaders to block the motion.

On Friday, 25 member-states of the council voted for the resolution, six voted against and 11 abstained. The "draft resolution ... is therefore adopted," UNHRC President Alex Van Meeuwen said in Geneva.

The sweeping approval came amid a call by Israeli Premier Benjamin Netanyahu on the world body's High Commissioner for Human Rights to drop support for the report, which highlights Israel's atrocities during its massive offensive on the Gaza Strip.

The resolution urges the endorsement of the recommendations mentioned in Goldstone's Gaza report, and "calls upon all concerned parties including United Nations bodies, to ensure their implementation."

The 575-page report, written by South African war crimes prosecutor Richard Goldstone and three other international experts, accuses the Israeli army of deliberate killing of Palestinian civilians among other instance of war crimes.

The reports recommends referring its conclusions to the International Criminal Court prosecutor in The Hague, if the Israeli and Palestinian sides of the conflict fail to conduct credible investigations within six months.

Tel Aviv worries that the resolution would open the door to lodging war crime charges in international courts against its senior politicians and army officials involved in the weeks-long onslaught against the blockaded Palestinian territory.

Top officials who would be in the judicial cross-hairs could include former prime minister Ehud Olmert, former foreign minister Tzipi Livni as well as incumbent Defense Minister Ehud Barak.

Far more than 1,400 Palestinians were killed during three weeks of Israel's land, sea and air assault in the impoverished coastal sliver, which remains under a crippling Israeli siege, in place since June 2007. presstv.ir

israel says Goldstone report is "nothing"


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