Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Prejudiced Academic should quit Cast Lead inquiry

From the Jerusalem Post, August 24, 2009, by Jonny Paul, correspondent in LONDON:

A European non-government organization has called on the UN to remove a British academic from its recent inquiry into alleged human rights violations in Gaza, over statements made rejecting Israel's right to self-defense against rocket attacks.

Geneva-based UN Watch submitted a 28-page legal brief to the UN last week calling on the UN fact-finding mission to disqualify London School of Economics law professor Christine Chinkin over prior statements she made that bring her impartiality in question.

...in previous statements Chinkin has "categorically rejected" Israel's right to self-defense against rocket attacks from Gaza and accused Israel of "aggression" and "prima facie war crimes."

UN Watch was referring to a letter published in the Sunday Times newspaper in January, during Operation Cast Lead, in which Chinkin ... declares Israel as the aggressor and perpetrator of "war crimes." The letter began by rejecting Israel's right to claim self-defense against Hamas rocket attacks, "deplorable as they are."

While the statement includes a passing reference to crimes committed by Hamas ...the entire statement is devoted to the thesis that Israel was guilty - the very accusations the inquiry is meant to impartially examine....

...With the enquiry set to assess if Israel has violated international human rights law and international humanitarian law during Operation Cast Lead, Chinkin has declared that Israel is guilty of both charges...

...the mission cannot claim to be operating with an open mind when one of its members has already made up hers...
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