Rassegna Stampa Elezioni Israeliane 2009

Monitoraggio attraverso i media internazionali delle elezioni in Israele del Febbraio 2009

UN report condemns over Gaza war

Posted by claudiacampli su 6 maggio, 2009

Times

James Bone in New York

A United Nations investigation yesterday accused Israel of “reckless disregard” for human life in using white phosphorus munitions that killed and injured Palestinians sheltering in a UN school during the Gaza war.

The four-man UN panel, led by Ian Martin, a former head of Amnesty International, confirmed that smoke projectiles containing white phosphoros had twice struck UN premises, causing two deaths.

The UN board had a limited mandate to investigate the nine worst attacks on UN premises and vehicles during the war earlier this year.

It found the Israel Defence Forces responsible for seven of those attacks, including one it described as a “direct and intentional strike into UN premises” that killed three young men at a UN school in Asma.

The UN panel blamed “a Palestinian faction, most likely Hamas” for one attack using a homemade Qassam rocket on a UN warehouse at the Karni crossing, saying the rocket was probably aimed at Israel but fell short. It was unable to establish responsibility for the ninth incident.

In the highly publicised case of the shelling of the UN’s Jabalia school on January 6, panel-members demanded that Israel apologise for falsely claiming that it was responding to Hamas mortar fire when it attacked, killing up to 40 people in the vicinity and injuring seven people inside.

Israel also wrongly claimed Hamas had fired from a UN field office it hit with artillery fire, the panel said.

“These allegations were untrue, continued to be made after it ought to have been known that they were untrue, and were not adequately withdrawn and publicly regretted,” the panel said.

The UN panel documented Israel’s use of white phosphoros munitions that hit the UN compound in Gaza City and the UN’s Beit Lahia school.

Two children, aged 5 and 7, were killed by shards of projectile casings at the Beit Lahia school on January 5 and smoke from the burning white phosphorus injured others.

“The firing by the IDF of projectiles containing white phosphorus in such close promixity to the school as to cause the death of two young children and serious injuries to others, as well as property damage, was highly negligent and amounted to reckless disregard for the lives and safety of those sheltering in the school,” an unclassifed 28-page summary of the 184-page report said.

Israel’s deputy UN Ambassador, Daniel Carmon, called the report “biased” and “one-sided”.

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