Int'l prosecutor Goldstone: Gaza probe goes on without Israeli OK

May 20, 2009 12:00

Former international prosecutor Richard Goldstone said Wednesday that he will go ahead with his UN investigation into possible war crimes in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict over Gaza even though Israel has withheld its approval. Goldstone said the UN investigators would enter Gaza through Egypt if necessary, but they had wanted to visit Israel first to assess what happened there. "I'm disappointed, and the members of the mission are disappointed, that we've had no positive response from the Israeli government," he said. "It would have been our wish to start there, to visit southern Israel, Sderot, to go into Gaza through the front door, to go to the West Bank, which is also included in our mission." Israel has indicated reluctance to go along with the mission ordered by the UN Human Rights Council because the original instructions were only to check what Israelis did to Palestinians. But Goldstone, a Jew with close ties to Israel, only accepted the assignment if he could see what happened on both sides.

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