Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
Photo: AP

Palestinians say Hague ignoring appeals

Following Ban's answer to Israeli response to Goldstone report Palestinian ambassador to UN says 'Security Council not showing commitment to handle report', adds Hague ignoring appeals to probe Israel's 'crimes'

WASHINGTON – The Palestinian ambassador to the UN, Riad Mansour, expressed disappointment Friday with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon's answer to the Israeli response to the Goldstone report.


"The Security Council is not showing a commitment to take care of the report," Mansour said, adding that the International Court of Justice at the Hague was ignoring Palestinian appeals to "investigate the crimes carried out in Palestinian territory".


Mansour told reporters at the UN Headquarters in New York that the Arab League was biding time and would respond to Ban's answer after consulting with attorneys.


He said Ban's decision not to criticize the Israeli document "has made our task easier, because he has not adopted the Israeli response but has also not criticized it".


Mansour said this proves that "the paper Israel filed does not meet the council's criteria", however he appeared disappointed.


The UN Security Council does not intend to formally discuss the report as three nations with veto power – the US, France, and Britain – have severely criticized its foundations.


But Arab journalists blasted Ban's response to the observations made by both sides on the Goldstone report during a press conference in which the secretary-general spoke. Ban said his job had been to give a review of the situation, and not to analyze it.


The UN secretary-general reported Thursday night he was uncertain whether Israel or the Palestinians had met UN demands to undertake "credible" investigations into allegations that they deliberately targeted civilians during last year's Gaza offensive.


In a short preface to his 72-page report, nearly all of which is responses by Israel and the Palestinians, Ban concluded he could not ultimately determine yet whether Israel and the Palestinians had carried out honest, independent probes into their own actions.


He said he hoped the assembly's resolution will, in fact, result in probes "that are independent, credible and in conformity with international standards."


But, he added that "no determination can be made on the implementation of the resolution by the parties concerned."


The Foreign Ministry was quick to express its satisfaction with the move. The Israeli document gives full expression to Israel's commitment to conducting an independent and credible investigation that upholds the standards of international law, the ministry said in an official statement.


פרסום ראשון: 02.05.10, 23:46
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