Barrister Amal Alamuddin, fiancee of actor George Clooney.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Amal Alamuddin, a British-Lebanese lawyer, who is also the fiancée of American Hollywood actor George Clooney, said on Tuesday she would not be serving on the three-member UN Gaza probe panel.
The commission will look into the IDF’s actions in the West Bank, east Jerusalem and Gaza over the past two months and investigate possible violations of international law.
The UNHRC president named
Alamuddin as one of the members to take part in the commission.
"I am horrified by the situation in the occupied Gaza Strip, particularly the civilian casualties," Alamuddin said in a statement, "and strongly believe that there should be an independent investigation and accountability for crimes that have been committed."
She said she was contacted by the UN for the first time on Monday evening, and that while honored to be offered the position, she had to turn it down due to "existing commitments – including eight ongoing cases."
Clooney's wife-to-be wished the other panelists "courage and strength," as they go forward with the inquiry into Israel's actions during the month-long Operation Protective Edge.
It is not yet clear who will replace Alamuddin on the panel.
Earlier on Monday, as the UN named its appointments to the much-talked about panel, Israel's Foreign Ministry was quick to respond, specifically to the organization naming William Schabas as head of the Human Rights Council’s probe into the IDF’s actions.
The ministry's spokesman Yigal Palmor said nominating a chairman, "whose opinions and positions against Israel are well known, proved beyond any doubt that Israel cannot expect justice from such a body."
Acoording to Palmor, the Council's report "has already been written and remains only to be signed.”
The commission is due to submit its findings to the UNHRC in Geneva in March, 2015.