Hamas Rejects Goldstone Report Accusations

Hamas has rejected accusations leveled against the movement that it had committed "war crimes" during the last year Israeli offensive against the Gaza Strip.

A UN Human Rights Council report that was compiled by a team led by the South African judge Richard Goldstone has accused both Israel and Hamas of war crimes during the three week war in the region.

Hamas, which launched rocket attacks to retaliate Israeli air raids and ground incursion into the strip, said a committee it appointed to follow up on the report found no intention to harm civilians.

The UN report claimed that rocket attacks against southern Israel deliberately targeted civilians and could constitute a crime against humanity.

"Palestinian armed groups have repeatedly confirmed that they are abiding by international humanitarian law, through broadcasting in different media that they intended to hit military targets and to avoid targeting civilians," the Hamas said, attributing civilian casualties to "incorrect (or imprecise) fire."

The request for independent investigations was made by the UN General Assembly last November. The UN gave both sides until Feb. 5 to respond to the report.

The report also accused Israel of grave crimes against humanity among which the use of phosphorous munitions against Palestinians in Gaza.

Some 1,400 Palestinians and 13 Israelis were killed during the war.

(Press TV)

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