Falk Tells Why Israel Stonewalls Gaza Probe

UN investigator Richard Falk says Israel refuses to cooperate with a Gaza war crimes probe because it knows deep down that it made serious human rights violations.

The Israeli government has announced that it will not cooperate with a UN investigation into the suspected war crimes committed in Gaza, calling the efforts as "one-sided attempts to demonize Israel" and "tarnish its reputation".

The refusal has drawn condemnation from world nations and international figures, as evidence suggests that the Israeli military had resorted to acts of genocide and crimes against humanity in the three-week offensive.

Falk, in an exclusive interview with Press TV on Thursday, said Tel Aviv is shirking the UN-sponsored investigation in fear of the abundant amount of evidence that it had violated the international laws of warfare in Gaza.

"The real reason is that the facts overwhelmingly support allegations that Israel is understandably concerned that any objective inquiry would indeed confirm the allegations and create a situation in which the international community would be obliged to seek some kind of procedure for accountability," said the UN special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories.

Falk said that Israel has mounted an enormous propaganda campaign to discredit the UN and to hide the fact that it committed war crimes against "a civilian population that’s trapped in a war zone" and have no where to run.

A war crime is defined as "a deliberate act that aims at harming civilians and causing great suffering, harming them physically, destroying their property in a way that cannot be justified".

Israel’s military foray into Gaza led to the death of nearly 1,400 Palestinians, the majority of whom were civilians.

Israeli war crimes involved the use of deadly white phosphorus shells in densely populated civilian areas, the employment of Palestinian children as human shields and the targeting of medics and hospitals.

The al-Attar teenage brothers sent shock waves around the world, after detailing the way they were taken from home at gunpoint, made to kneel in front of Israeli tanks to deter Hamas fighters from firing, and sent by Israeli soldiers into Palestinian houses to clear them.

"They would make us go first so if any fighters shot at them the bullets would hit us, not them," 14-year-old Al’a al-Attar told The Guardian.

Another shocking revelation came on January 4 when Israeli troops evacuated some 110 Gazans — half of whom were children — into a single-residence house in the Zeitoun neighborhood and warned them to stay indoors.

Twenty-four hours later, the soldiers shelled the home incessantly, killing more than 30 of the people inside the house.

The World Health Organization, meanwhile, reported that more than half of Gaza’s 27 hospitals and 44 clinics were damaged by Israeli bombs. More than sixteen medics and ambulance drivers were killed when they tried to tend to the wounded.

(Press TV)

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