Israeli military reservists and activists gathered outside the UN office in Geneva on Tuesday, dressed as Hamas terrorists and waving Palestinian flags to protest an inquiry against Israel.
The protest campaign initiated by the Shurat HaDin Law Center was scheduled to coincide with the release of the UN Human Rights Council’s (UNHRC) legal report on Israel’s alleged war crimes.
The inquiry blamed the violence between Israelis and Palestinians, claiming Israel has "no intention of ending the occupation" and is pursuing "complete control" over what it calls the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem
“The UNHRC needs to be shut down and the Pillay Report canceled. Both Hamas and the UNHRC have the same goal - the destruction of the Jewish state," the protestors said.
The probe was mandated by the UNHRC in 2021 after the 11-day conflict with Hamas. At least 250 Palestinians and 13 people in Israel were killed in the fierce fighting, which saw Gaza militants fire rockets at Israeli cities and Israel carry out air strikes across the coastal enclave.
The Pillay Commission headed by ex-human rights chief Navi Pillay is set to examine Israeli actions both within the country’s borders and in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
Earlier this year, the foreign ministry announced that Israel will not cooperate with a United Nations inquiry into the 2021 conflict, citing partiality against the state by probe officials.
The three-person Pillay panel is also composed of Indian expert Miloon Kothari and Australian expert Chris Sidoti, and it was repeatedly accused of anti-Israel rhetoric and whitewashing Hamas attacks.