UN General Assembly Endorses Goldstone Report
In marked contrast to the vote held earlier this week in the U.S. House of Representatives, the UN General Assembly voted overwhelmingly on Thursday to endorse the UN Fact-Finding Mission’s Goldstone report which alleges that both Israel and Hamas committed war crimes during the 22-day conflict that occurred during December 2008-January 2009.
The General Assembly vote went like this: 114 in favor of the report, with 18 against and 44 abstentions. Israel, the U.S., Germany, Holland, and Australia were among those in opposition, while France and the U.K. abstained. The resolution found great support among representatives of Arab-majority states and within the developing world.
The GA resolution calls on the Secretary General to refer the case to the Security Council within three months, and, following the Goldstone report’s own recommendations, demands that Israel and Hamas launch investigations into the violations the report examines.
Ma’an News cites international law specialist Richard Falk as less than enthused with the resolution–he expressed concern that the resolution refers the case to the Security Council instead of directly to the International Criminal Court.
The Jerusalem Post quotes Gabriela Shalev, the Israeli ambassador to the UN, as finding the General Assembly to have “detach[ed] itself from reality” in endorsing the Goldstone report.