The UN Human Rights Council will consider launching a broad, international investigation into abuses in the latest violence against Gaza and also into “systematic” abuses, according to a proposal tabled on Tuesday.
The draft resolution will be discussed during a special session of the council on Thursday, requested amid 11 days of deadly violence against the besieged Gaza this month.
BREAKING: UN Human Rights Council special session must address violations in Israel/OPT
Amnesty International’s representative to the UN in Geneva, Kevin Whelan said:https://t.co/bQ4rNy1qew
— Amnesty International USA (@amnestyusa) May 21, 2021
The text, presented by Pakistan on behalf of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, calls for the UN top rights body to “urgently establish an ongoing independent, international commission of inquiry… in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem and in Israel.”
The investigators, the text said, should probe “all alleged violations and abuses” of international law linked to the tensions that sparked the latest violence.
Before a truce took hold last Friday, Israeli airstrikes and artillery fire on Gaza killed 280 Palestinians, including 70 children, and wounded more than 1,900 people from May 10, the health ministry in Gaza says.
The session was requested by Pakistan, which is the coordinator of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, and the Palestinian authorities, it said. https://t.co/cCKbMY5zJf
— The Hindu (@the_hindu) May 20, 2021
But the draft text goes far beyond the most recent aggression, also calling for investigators to probe “underlying root causes of recurrent tensions and instability, including systematic discrimination and repression based on group identity”.
The investigation should focus on establishing facts and gather evidence and other material that could be used in legal proceedings, and as far as possible should identify perpetrators to ensure they are held accountable, it said.
“Long-standing and systemic impunity for international law violations has thwarted justice, created a protection crisis and undermined all efforts to achieve a just and peaceful solution,” the draft text said.
UN rights council mulling probe into Israel-Gaza war, ‘root causes’ https://t.co/UTHWxALaTB
— The Times of Israel (@TimesofIsrael) May 25, 2021
It remains unclear whether there will be enough support at the Human Rights Council to pass the resolution.
Twenty of the council’s 47 members were among the 66 countries that backed holding Thursday’s special session, which was requested by Pakistan and the Palestinian authority.
The rights council holds three regular sessions each year but can hold special sessions if at least a third of members support the idea.
Thursday will mark the 30th extraordinary meeting of the United Nations’ top rights body since its creation 15 years ago, and it will be the ninth focused on Israel.
(The New Arab, PC, Social Media)