UNITED NATIONS — The UN General Assembly on Friday voted to
give Israel and the Palestinians an additional five months to conduct
independent investigations of alleged war crimes during Operation Cast Lead in the Gaza Strip.
It warned that if independent investigations
are not conducted "further action" may be taken by UN bodies
including the Security Council.
The resolution was adopted Friday by a vote of 98-7 with 31 abstentions. Fifty-six countries did not vote.
November, the General Assembly gave Israel and the Palestinians three
months to undertake "independent, credible investigations" into the
findings of a UN-appointed expert panel chaired by South African
Judge Richard Goldstone. It concluded that both sides committed war
crimes and possible crimes against humanity during the Gaza conflict.