Israel seeking to block UN inquiry into Gaza war crimes

Israel has launched a campaign to block a UN inquiry into Tel Aviv’s human rights violations during its 50-day bloody war on the blockaded Gaza Strip last summer.

Israel is directing its diplomats to ensure that a majority of 47 countries on the UN Commission of Inquiry on Gaza do not support an investigation into the latest Israeli offensive against the Palestinian land, the Jerusalem Post reported on Wednesday.

The campaign aims to get “as many countries as possible – with the hope that at least 24 will not approve the committee’s findings – to either vote against, abstain or not show up [for the vote],” the Israeli Ministry for Foreign Affairs told the representatives abroad in a cable.
Part of the campaign against the UN commission is to discredit its head, Canadian lawyer William Schabas, who has accused Israel of war crimes, crimes against humanity and aggression against Palestinians.

The UN body is due to present its findings on the Gaza war to the UN Human Rights Council in March. A vote on the findings will be held a few days after the report is submitted.

Israel’s war on Gaza that ended in August 2014 with an Egyptian-brokered truce killed over 2,140 Palestinians, including 577 children. Over 11,100 others, including 3,374 children, 2,088 women and 410 elderly people, were also injured.

About 1,500 buildings and structures were also demolished during the Israeli offensive.

Gazan officials have warned that more people could die as tens of thousands are still displaced in the wake of the recent Israeli war, waiting for money for the reconstruction of their houses.

The Gaza trip has been under Israel’s crippling siege since 2007.


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