WORLD PRESS IMAGES FROM GAZA & WEST BANK

WORLD PRESS PHOTO CONTEST 2010

ALSO SEE THE PHOTO SERIE  “Gaza – landscape of destruction”

GOLDSTONEFACTS.org

Goldstone FactsAbout us

On September 15th 2009, the U.N. Fact-Finding Mission led by Justice Richard Goldstone released its report (executive summary can be found here) on the Israeli invasion of Gaza. The report concluded that there exists strong evidence indicating serious violations of international human rights and humanitarian law by Israel and Hamas during the Gaza conflict. The report emphasized that Israel and Hamas committed actions amounting to war crimes and possibly crimes against humanity.

Goldstonefacts.org is a project created by a group of individuals from around the globe who decided to dramatize portions of the Goldstone Report. We are all volunteers and amateurs. Our professional backgrounds are diverse as are our ethnic and national origins. In fact, most of us have never met each other.

Visit Goldstonefacts.org

Did you know this about Gaza?

IDF admits war crime after months of heavy pro-israeli propaganda

GAZA MASSACRE: UN Report on Gaza

Read the report

Key excerpts: UN Gaza report

A United Nations investigation into Israel’s campaign in the Gaza Strip earlier this year has concluded that there is evidence both sides committed war crimes.

Below are extracts from a UN statement accompanying the report:

[The report ] concluded there is evidence indicating serious violations of international human rights and humanitarian law were committed by Israel during the Gaza conflict, and that Israel committed actions amounting to war crimes, and possibly crimes against humanity.

The report also concludes there is also evidence that Palestinian armed groups committed war crimes, as well as possibly crimes against humanity, in their repeated launching of rockets and mortars into Southern Israel…

The Mission found that, in the lead up to the Israeli military assault on Gaza, Israel imposed a blockade amounting to collective punishment and carried out a systematic policy of progressive isolation and deprivation of the Gaza Strip. During the Israeli military operation, code-named “Operation Cast Lead,” houses, factories, wells, schools, hospitals, police stations and other public buildings were destroyed… More than 1,400 people were killed during the military operation…

The report concludes that the Israeli military operation was directed at the people of Gaza as a whole, in furtherance of an overall and continuing policy aimed at punishing the Gaza population, and in a deliberate policy of disproportionate force aimed at the civilian population. The destruction of food supply installations, water sanitation systems, concrete factories and residential houses was the result of a deliberate and systematic policy which has made the daily process of living, and dignified living, more difficult for the civilian population…

The report underlines that in most of the incidents investigated by it, and described in the report, loss of life and destruction caused by Israeli forces during the military operation was a result of disrespect for the fundamental principle of “distinction” in international humanitarian law that requires military forces to distinguish between military targets and civilians and civilian objects at all times…

[The ]report describes a number of specific incidents in which Israeli forces launched “direct attacks against civilians with lethal outcome.” These are, it says, cases in which the facts indicate no justifiable military objective pursued by the attack and concludes they amount to war crimes…

A number of other incidents the Report concludes may constitute war crimes include a direct and intentional attack on the Al Quds Hospital and an adjacent ambulance depot in Gaza City.

The Report also covers violations arising from Israeli treatment of Palestinians in the West Bank, including excessive force against Palestinian demonstrators, sometimes resulting in deaths, increased closures, restriction of movement and house demolitions. The detention of Palestinian Legislative Council members, the Report says, effectively paralyzed political life in the Occupied Palestinian Territories…

The Fact-Finding Mission also found that the repeated acts of firing rockets and mortars into Southern Israel by Palestinian armed groups “constitute war crimes and may amount to crimes against humanity,” by failing to distinguish between military targets and the civilian population. “The launching of rockets and mortars which cannot be aimed with sufficient precisions at military targets breaches the fundamental principle of distinction,” the report says. “Where there is no intended military target and the rockets and mortars are launched into civilian areas, they constitute a deliberate attack against the civilian population.”

The Mission concludes that the rocket and mortars attacks “have caused terror in the affected communities of southern Israel,” as well as “loss of life and physical and mental injury to civilians and damage to private houses, religious buildings and property, thereby eroding the economic and cultural life of the affected communities and severely affecting the economic and social rights of the population.”

The Mission urges the Palestinian armed groups holding the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit to release him on humanitarian grounds, and, pending his release, give him the full rights accorded to a prisoner of war under the Geneva Conventions including visits from the International Committee of the Red Cross. The Report also notes serious human rights violations, including arbitrary arrests and extra-judicial executions of Palestinians, by the authorities in Gaza and by the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank.

The prolonged situation of impunity has created a justice crisis in the Occupied Palestinian Territory that warrants action, the Report says. The Mission found the Government of Israel had not carried out any credible investigations into alleged violations.

It recommended that the UN Security Council require Israel to report to it, within six months, on investigations and prosecutions it should carry out with regard to the violations identified in its Report. The Mission further recommends that the Security Council set up a body of independent experts to report to it on the progress of the Israeli investigations and prosecutions.

If the experts’ reports do not indicate within six months that good faith, independent proceedings are taking place, the Security Council should refer the situation in Gaza to the ICC Prosecutor. The Mission recommends that the same independent expert body also report to the Security Council on proceedings undertaken by the relevant Gaza authorities with regard to crimes committed by the Palestinian side.

As in the case of Israel, if within six months there are no good faith independent proceedings conforming to international standards in place, the Council should refer the situation to the ICC Prosecutor.

Ref: BBC

Israeli soldiers criticise tactics in Gaza war – 15 Jul 09

UN war investigators arrive in Gaza

United Nations team has arrived in the Gaza Strip to investigate possible war crimes and other violations of international law during Israel’s assault on the territory earlier this year.

The 15-member team, headed by Richard Goldstone, a South African judge, entered the Gaza Strip through the Rafah crossing on Monday.

The team entered from Egypt after being denied visas to cross from Israel, despite multiple requests by the UN.

“We have come here to see, to learn, to talk to people in all walks of life; ordinary people, governmental people, administrative people,” Goldstone said.

The team plans to complete its fact-finding mission in a week, but Goldstone said they were likely to return within a month, before presenting a report in August.

Goldstone’s team plans to meet witnesses and victims of alleged violations, non-governmental organisations and UN agencies in Gaza.

Goldstone is former chief prosecutor at the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda and lead a public inquiry into intimidation and violence leading up to South Africa’s first post-apartheid elections in 1994.

Hamas welcome

Ghazi Hamad, a representative of Hamas, and local UN officials met the investigators at the Rafah crossing.

“They have already met government officials, mostly from the ministry of health here,” Al Jazeera’s Ayman Mohyeldin, reporting from Gaza City, said.

In depth

Analysis and features from after the war
“They have been presented with nearly two hours of video material prepared by the government, including testimonies of witnesses and those that suffered.”

“Over the course of the next few days … they will see for themselves the wanton destruction across the Gaza Strip. They will visit areas where alleged war crimes have taken place and hear directly from the Palestinian people.”

Israel accuses the UN’s mission of being biased.

“They have been instructed to prove that Israel is guilty and we will not collaborate with such a masquerade,” Yigal Palmor, Israel’s foreign ministry spokesman, told The Associated Press news agency.

Palmor said Israel had no plans to co-operate with the investigation.

In May, Goldstone had said he hoped to visit Gaza and southern Israel and hold public hearings on whether war crimes had been committed.

Fawzi Barhoum, a Hamas official, welcomed the investigation in a statement.

“We hope to see the leaders of the Zionist enemy brought to justice as soon as possible as war criminals in the international courts,” he said.

Conduct questioned

During the 22-day conflict which ended in January, 1,417 Palestinians were killed, including 926 civilians, according to Palestinian officials.

But Israel says that the number killed is considerably lower, and that only 295 of the dead were civilians.

International human rights groups, including Amnesty International, have called for a credible and independent investigation of Israel’s conduct in Gaza.

They specifically asked for inquiries into the destruction of residential areas and the use of artillery shells containing white phosphorous, which can cause severe burns.

Israel, which conducted an internal investigation by its armed forces last month, says it found no evidence of serious misconduct by its troops.

ReF: Haartez

FIGHT ISRAHELL: Organizing to End U.S. Complicity in the Crimes of Israel in Palestine

Assaf Kfoury and Ahmed Shawki speak on a panel with Noam Chomsky.about organizing to support the people of Palestine/Gaza and force an end to all US aid to Israel.
Flimed by Paul Hubbard at the Palestine Cultural Center for Peace in Boston MA on 1-21-09

Also read the Sasson Report – The Sasson Report is an official Israeli government report published on March 8, 2005 that concluded that Israeli state bodies had been discreetly diverting millions of shekels to build West Bank settlements and outposts that were illegal under Israeli law. Ms Sasson called it a “blatant violation of the law” and said “drastic steps” were needed to rectify the situation. It describes secret cooperation between various ministries and official institutions to consolidate “wildcat” outposts, which settlers began erecting more than a decade ago. Sasson added that the problem was ongoing, saying “the process of outpost expansion is profoundly under way.”.[1]

The report states:

* The housing ministry supplied 400 mobile homes for outposts on private Palestinian land
* The defence ministry approved the positioning of trailers to begin new outposts
* The education ministry paid for nurseries and their teachers
* The energy ministry connected outposts to the electricity grid
* Roads to outposts were paid for with taxpayers’ money



http://iheartgaza.org/

FIGHT ISRAHELL! – Report: Belgian court petitioned to arrest Livni upon arrival in Brussels + Arrest Olmert, Livni, and Barak for war crimes

bild-71

European attorneys have reportedly petitioned a Belgian court to arrest Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni upon her arrival in Brussels later Wednesday, according to the Jawalan.com Web Site.

The complaints was apparently lodged on behalf of Belgian and French nationals with relatives who were either wounded or killed in Gaza, and calls for Livni to be arrested for war crimes.

The Foreign Ministry is looking into the report and the Israeli embassy in Brussels has not yet been involved in the matter, sources said.
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Belgian law does not actually allow the arrest of a foreign official with high standing, but the matter could bring embarrassment to Israel and may represent the first in a string of lawsuits now being prepared by pro-Palestinian elements around the world.

Israeli human rights activists: Arrest Olmert, Livni, and Barak for war crimes

Meanwhile, anonymous self-described Israeli human rights activists have set up an Internet site detailing alleged war crimes committed by senior government officials and Israel Defense Forces officers.

No known human rights organization is behind the site, whose founders refuse to give their names.

The site, http://www.wanted.org.il, includes “arrest orders,” complete with pictures and personal details, for Defense Minister Ehud Barak, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert,Livni, Deputy Defense Minister Matan Vilnai, Public Security Minister Avi Dichter, National Infrastructure Minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer, IDF Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi and his two predecessors, Dan Halutz and Moshe Ya’alon, former air force commander Eliezer Shkedy and others.

It also explains how to inform the International Criminal Court in The Hague of when the “suspects” are outside Israel, and hence vulnerable to arrest.

The “arrest order” for Barak, for instance, states: “On December 27, 2008, the suspect ordered an aerial assault on all of Gaza’s population centers.

The assault included hundreds of sorties by fighter jets that dropped hundreds of tons of bombs on residential areas of Gaza, which led to the deaths of 1,200 people – men, women and children.

Some 5,300 people were wounded and hundreds of thousands became refugees. On December 10, 2008, a formal complaint was filed against Ehud Barak to the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Holland … on suspicion of war crimes and crimes against humanity because of the siege of Gaza.”

Ref: Haaretz

Screaming ANTI-SEMITISM? Crying the world are against us again? Well, here are some Israeli actually endorsing it. It never stops does it? The fight for human rights and international law!

Israeli human rights activists: Arrest Olmert, Livni, and Barak for war crime