Israel’s international enemies are still pursuing charges of war crimes against the Jewish state, for its actions in combating terrorists in Gaza during Operation Protective Edge. But The Jerusalem Post’s Tovah Lazaroff reports that a high-level group of diplomats and military experts have absolved Israel of any wrongdoing after a fact-finding mission there in May:
The IDF acted within the bounds of international law during its war with Hamas in Gaza last summer, a high-level group of former diplomats and military experts concluded after a fact-finding mission to Israel in May, according to the NGO UN Watch.
UN Watch said a full copy of the report had been submitted to the UN Human Rights Council’s fact-finding mission into last summer’s conflict. The two-member UNHRC probe, headed by former New York Supreme Court justice Mary McGowan Davis, is expected to publish its own findings with the next 10 days, possibly as early Monday.
On Friday, Geneva-based UN Watch published sections from a report in support of Israel by the ad-hoc High Level International Military Group, whose 11 members include the former NATO Military Committee chairman Gen. Klaus Naumann of Germany; former Italian foreign minister Guilio Terzi; former US State Department ambassador at large for war crimes issues Pierre-Richard Prosper; and the former commander of British Forces in Afghanistan, Col. Richard Kemp.
“During Operation Protective Edge last summer, in the air, on the ground and at sea, Israel not only met a reasonable international standard of observance of the laws of armed conflict, but in many cases significantly exceeded that standard,” the group concluded.
“We saw clear evidence of this from the upper to the lower levels of command. A measure of the seriousness with which Israel took its moral duties and its responsibilities under the laws of armed conflict is that, in some cases, Israel’s scrupulous adherence to the laws of war cost Israeli soldiers’ and civilians’ lives,” the group said.