The Soldiers Speak; What about the UN inquiry?

March 19, 2009

Israeli soldiers are telling their stories about questionable military practices during the conflict in Gaza.  They are describing attacks on unarmed civilians, using phrases like “cold blooded murder” in an effort to expose human rights violations.   But:

“Neither the Israeli justice system, despite its acknowledged strengths, nor that of the Palestinian Authority has ever properly addressed violations of international law by Israeli forces or Palestinian fighters.”

The UN’s Board of Inquiry is currently investigating attacks on UN facilities, but what of the civilians on both sides of the conflict?

“What is needed is a comprehensive international investigation that looks at all alleged violations of international law – by Israel, by Hamas and by other Palestinian armed groups involved in the conflict.”

Amnesty International recently sent a letter to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urging her to:

“…press for effective steps to be taken by the UN Security Council to ensure that a comprehensive international investigation is established to inquire into alleged war crimes and other serious violations of international law committed by all parties to the recent conflict in Gaza and southern Israel.”

This would require an independent and impartial investigation into all alleged violations of international humanitarian law that can provide recommendations on the prosecution of those responsible by the relevant authorities.