zaterdag 4 april 2009

Onderzoek Gaza-oorlog

Onderzoek naar vermeende oorlogsmisdaden in Gaza
De Zuid-Afrikaanse jurist Richard Goldstone is door de VN benoemd om een onderzoeksmissie te ondernemen naar vermeende misdaden van Israel tijdens de Gazaoorlog.
Echter Goldstone heeft zelf al aangegeven die missie uit te zullen breiden naar alle misdaden tijdens die oorlog, dus ook de vermeende misdaden door Hamas begaan. Dat laatste is ook nodig om de factor proportionaliteit te kunnen beoordelen.
Nu is het wel zo dat er pas internationaal vervolgd mag worden als een land zelf geen onderzoek doet naar beschuldigingen over misstanden en eventueel bewezen misstanden niet berecht.
Zo heeft de Spaanse onderzoeker Fernando Andreu een onderzoek gelast naar gebeurtenissen uit 2002.
Andreu klaagde enkele Israeliers aan wegens de liquidatie in 2002 van terrorist  Shehadeh, omdat er ook burgers bij omkwamen bij die actie.
Volgens het Spaanse Nationale Hof is een Spaans onderzoek niet nodig omdat de zaak onderzocht wordt door de Israëlische justitie.
Het is dus maar de vraag of de commissie van Goldstone tot de conclusie kan komen dat Israel internationaal berecht moet worden inzake de Gaza-oorlog.
De Standaard:

Hof roept op onderzoek tegen Israël te stoppen

  • vrijdag 03 april 2009

Hof roept op onderzoek tegen Israël te stoppen

Het Spaanse Nationale Hof roept de onderzoeksrechter Fernando Andreu op om zijn onderzoek naar zeven hoge Israëlische functionarissen te stoppen. Het onderzoek kwam er na een klacht van de familieleden van de slachtoffers die vielen bij een Israëlisch bombardement op Gaza in 2002. Behalve de geviseerde Hamas-militant kwamen daarbij nog veertien mensen om het leven, onder wie negen kinderen.

Volgens het Nationale Hof is een Spaans onderzoek niet nodig omdat de zaak onderzocht wordt door de Israëlische justitie. Maar Andreu argumenteerde in januari nog dat hij een onderzoek moest openen omdat het gerecht in Israël geen juridische procedures tegen de zeven heeft gestart. (ap)
Jerusalem Post

Madrid judge asked to nix Israeli probe

Spanish prosecutors have asked a Madrid judge to suspend an investigation of seven Israeli officials over a bombing in Gaza that killed a senior Hamas terrorist and 14 others.
Strategic Affairs Minister...

Strategic Affairs Minister Moshe Ya'alon, who was chief of General Staff at the time of the 2002 assassination of Hamas kingpin Salah Shehadeh.
Photo: Ariel Jerozolimksi [file]

In a writ issued Thursday, prosecutors at the National Court asked Judge Fernando Andreu to hold off because they said Israel is investigating the attack.

Andreu said in January that one reason he agreed to open the investigation was that Israel had neither responded to a request for information about the bombing nor started legal proceedings against the seven officials.

The probe angered Israeli officials. Following consultations, Israel said Spain had agreed to trim the authority of its courts in cases of so-called universal jurisdiction.

A month ago, after having reviewed documents forwarded by the Israeli Embassy in Madrid, Andreu decided to carry on with his investigation of the Israeli officials for suspected crimes against humanity, Spanish judicial sources said.

The alleged offenses relate to the targeted killing of Hamas terrorist Salah Shehadeh in Gaza City on July 22, 2002.

Palestinian officials said 15 people were killed in the raid - Shehadeh, 49, the commander of the head of Hamas's Izzadin Kassam 'military wing' in Gaza, his wife, a daughter, and his right-hand man, Zaher Nasser, 35, as well as nine children.

The judge reportedly reached his decision after determining that the Israeli documents showed the state had not launched any probe into the incident.
That decision was critical for determining jurisdiction in a case where the concept of 'universal jurisdiction' could be applied.
Universal jurisdiction allows Spain and other European countries to prosecute foreigners for war crimes if a court is satisfied that the suspects will not be tried for their acts in their home country.
Andreu is probing the actions taken by Industry and Trade Minister Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, who was defense minister at the time; Strategic Affairs Minister Moshe Ya'alon, who was chief of General Staff; Dan Halutz, then-OC Air Force; then-National Security Council head Giora Eiland; the defense minister's bureau chief, Brig.-Gen. Mike Herzog, who was a senior Defense Ministry official in 2002; Kadima MK Avi Dichter, who was head of the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) and former OC Southern Command Maj.-Gen. (res) Doron Almog.
Should Andreu choose to issue an international arrest warrant for any of the seven, they could be arrested upon arrival in any EU member state.
The Spanish government has been considering a proposal to amend the controversial war crimes law that now allows the court to investigate the Israelis.

Rebecca Anna Stoil, Etgar Lefkovits and Herb Keinon contributed to this report.

Jerusalem Post

Jewish judge to probe 'Gaza war crimes

The United Nations on Friday appointed a widely respected South African judge who is a trustee of the Hebrew University to lead a high-level mission to investigate alleged war crimes committed by Israel in the Gaza Strip during Operation Cast Lead.
Judge Richard Goldstone at...

Judge Richard Goldstone at Beloit College.
Photo: Courtesy

Israel refused to say if it would cooperate.

Richard Goldstone, the former UN chief prosecutor for war crimes in Yugoslavia and Rwanda, was named to head the investigation ordered by the Human Rights Council in January.

According to the mandate, the investigation should focus on Palestinian victims of the three-week operation against Hamas earlier this year.

But Goldstone, a Jewish former judge of the South African constitutional court, said his team would investigate "all violations of international humanitarian law" before, during and after the conflict that ended Jan. 18.

"It's in the interest of the victims. It brings acknowledgment of what happened to them. It can assist the healing process," he told reporters in Geneva. "I would hope it's in the interests of all the political actors, too."

Martin Uhomoibhi, the council president, explained the apparent contradiction by saying the mission always intended to evaluate the proportionality of Israel's response, which requires that acts of both warring parties be examined.

"I am confident that the mission will be in a position to assess in an independent and impartial manner all human rights and humanitarian law violations committed in the context of the (Gaza) conflict," he said in a statement.

Israel has rejected any participation in previous council investigations, including one led by Nobel Peace Prize laureate Desmond Tutu, calling them biased.

It would not say Friday if it would cooperate with the delegation, which also includes British professor of international law Christine Chinkin, Pakistani lawyer Hina Jilani and retired Irish Army Col. Desmond Travers.

"This committee is instructed not to seek out the truth but to single out Israel for alleged crimes," said Yigal Palmor, spokesman for the Israeli Foreign Ministry. He called the 47-nation body "discredited" and said it has "practically no credibility at all."

Goldstone said he was "shocked, as a Jew," to be invited to head the mission.

"It adds an additional dimension," said Gladstone, who is on the board of governors at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. "I've taken a deep interest in what happens in Israel. I'm associated with organizations that have worked in Israel. And I believe I can approach the daunting task that I have accepted in an evenhanded and impartial manner."

On Monday, Judge Advocate-General Brig.-Gen. Avichai Mandelblit exonerated the IDF and closed a Military Police investigation into accounts of alleged serious human rights violations during Operation Cast Lead.

Mandelblit launched the investigation last week after "testimonies" from soldiers, leaked to the media by head of the Rabin Pre-Military Academy, Danny Zamir, claimed that soldiers had deliberately shot and killed innocent Palestinians during the operation.

Yaakov Katz



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