PressTV-Israel moves to block UN war crimes report
Tel Aviv seeks to prevent the release of the findings of a UN investigation into Israeli war crimes against Palestinians in Gaza, with the prime minister of the regime labeling such a move as a “waste of time.”
Addressing Israeli ministers on Sunday, Benjamin Netanyahu claimed that “whoever wants a baseless automatic accusation against Israel can waste their time reading the UN report.”
The UN Human Rights Council (HRC) is due later in June to publish the findings of the probe into Tel Aviv’s war crimes during the latest Israeli military aggression against the blockaded Gaza Strip in the summer of 2014.
The remarks by Netanyahu signal Tel Aviv’s attempt to preempt the release of the findings, which was postponed in March.
The Israeli premier also blamed the Palestinian resistance movement Hamas for civilian casualties in the Gaza war.
On Sunday, Israel issued its own report on the latest war, defending its crimes against the people of Gaza. The report cites Western leaders who have expressed support for the military action. It also claims that Israel did its utmost to avoid civilian casualties in the war.
Tel Aviv has boycotted the HRC investigators. The regime took a similar action when the council probed its 2008-9 war on Gaza. Israel was accused of war crimes after the previous inquiry.
Meanwhile, Palestinians rejected the findings of the Israeli report on the 2014 war, saying Israel is trying to clear itself of the crimes it committed during the 50-day aggression.
“Israel’s decision to deny having targeted civilians in Gaza is the logical extension of what it did in the Gaza Strip,” said Ihab Bseiso, a spokesman for the Palestinian government in Ramallah, on Sunday.
In reaction to the Israeli report, Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri stated, “The report turns the truth and is valueless because part of these crimes was committed live in front of the cameras, apart from the huge amount of martyrs, wounded and wide destruction that confirm that these crimes were deliberate.”
More than 2,130 Palestinians lost their lives and some 11,000 were injured in the Israeli war on Gaza. The victims included about 580 children and nearly 260 women, according to Gaza health officials.
Nabil Shaath, a senior Palestinian official and former chief negotiator, said the Israeli report was “sickening and outrageous.”
Israelis kill another Palestinian in West Bank
On the same day that Israel issued its “outrageous” report on the war on Gaza, a 21-year-old Palestinian man, Abdullah Ghanayem, was shot dead by Israeli forces during clashes in the village of Kufor Malik, northeast of the occupied West Bank city of Ramallah. The Israelis stormed the village to detain a number of Palestinians during the early hours of Sunday.
A massive funeral was held for Ghanayem later in the day.
Local Palestinian sources said an Israeli military vehicle turned over in the course of clashes with the Palestinians in the village and landed on the dead body of Ghanayem.
Raiding homes in the occupied West Bank and arresting Palestinians have become a routine for Israeli forces.
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