UN chief to bring Goldstone report before Security Council

10:24, November 07, 2009      

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UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Friday said that he will transmit the Goldstone report to the UN Security Council at the request of the General Assembly.

"As requested by the General Assembly, I will transmit the report of the Fact Finding Mission to the Security Council," Ban told reporters here after he briefed 15-nation Security Council on the current situation in Afghanistan.

"I know that all of you have recently followed the vote yesterday in the General Assembly concerning the UN Fact-Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict that was led by Justice (Richard) Goldstone," a former prosecutor at the UN war crimes tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, he added.

The secretary-general just returned from a visit to Afghanistan, Britain and Greece.

"I will do it as soon as possible," the secretary-general said, referring to passing the Goldstone report to the Security Council.

Earlier Friday, Israel rejected the General Assembly's non-binding resolution, with an Israeli foreign ministry statement saying that it "is completely detached from realities on the ground that Israel must face."

Israel rejected the Goldstone report, saying it is "biased" and "one-sided."

The 192-nation UN General Assembly Thursday voted 114-18 to adopt a resolution to call upon both Israel and Palestine to conduct "independent and credible" investigations of the alleged war crimes during the 22-day Gaza conflict which broke out on Dec.27, 2008.

The resolution was adopted after more than 40 countries, including Israel, took the floor at the two-day plenary General Assembly session on the Goldstone report, which accused both Israel and Hamas militants of war crimes in the Gaza conflict, which left more than 1,400 Palestinians and 13 Israelis killed.

The General Assembly "requests the secretary-general to transmit the report of the United Nations Fact-Finding Mission on the Gaza conflict to the Security Council," the resolution said.

The General Assembly "requests the secretary-general to report to the General Assembly within a period of three months, on the implementation of the present resolution, with a view to considering further action, if necessary, by the relevant United Nations organs and bodies, including the Security Council," the resolution said.

The new resolution urged Israel and Palestine to launch the investigations that "are independent, credible and in conformity with international standards" within a period of three months.

The president of the 64th GA session, Ali Treki, told reporters after the adoption of the new resolution that "this is an important declaration against impunity."

"It is a call for justice and accountability," he said. "Without justice, there can be no progress toward peace. Human beings should be treated as human beings, regardless of his or her religion or nationality."

Source: Xinhua
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