Israel outraged by UN Human Rights Council endorsement of controversial Goldstone report

The Goldstone report which condemned Israel and Hamas for war crimes in the January Gaza offensive, reserving special criticism for Israel, was carried by a majority of 25 of the 47-member Human Rights Council in Geneva Friday, Oct. 16. Six nations – the US, Holland, Italy, Ukraine, Hungary and Slovakia voted against, 11 abstained and 5 members, including France and Britain, did not take part in the vote.
Israel rejected the charges in the report as one-side and untrue and said the Human Rights Council resolution – drafted by the Palestinians with Egypt, Nigeria, Pakistan and Tunisia, on behalf of non-aligned, African, Islamic and Arab nations – threatens peace efforts.
Israeli prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu warned in advance that Israel would not be able to take risks for peace if it could not defend itself from attacks on its citizens. Israel’s ambassador said embracing the report would encourage “terrorists everywhere.”
The Palestinian Authority at first agreed to postpone the report’s review until March, but then changed its mind when Mahmoud Abbas came under angry criticism by Palestinian extremists. The PA sought to have the endorsed report forwarded to the UN Security Council and ultimately lead to international proceedings against leaders of Israel’s 22-day Gaza campaign for halting an eight-year Hamas missile blitz against population centers.
The Goldstone report recommends referral of its conclusions to the International Criminal Court prosecutor in The Hague if Israel and Hamas fail to conduct credible investigations within six months.

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