UN human rights body to hold special session on violence in Gaza
Gaza UN human rights body to hold special session on violence in Gaza
Israeli military spokesman admits killings had handed PR victory to Hamas
The UNâs top human rights body will hold a special session to discuss âthe deteriorating situation in the occupied Palestinian territoriesâ after the killing of 60 Palestinians by Israeli troops at mass border protests on Monday.
Amid the continuing international fallout from the killings, which coincided with the ceremony to mark the transfer of the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, the Palestinian foreign ministry announced it was also recalling its ambassadors to four European countries, to protest against their participation in a party held by Israelâs foreign ministry celebrating the opening of the new embassy.
In a rare concession, a senior Israeli military spokesman said the killings by Israeli soldiers had handed a PR victory to Hamas.
According to a report in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, Israeli military spokesman Lt Col Jonathan Conricus, told members of the Jewish Federations of North America: âWe havenât been able to get that message out of how it is from our side, what we are defending â" and the âwinning pictureâ overwhelmingly, by a knockout, unfortunately, have been the graphics from the Palestinian side.Israel faces outcry over Gaza killings during Jerusalem embassy protests Read more
âThe amount o f casualties has done us a tremendous disservice, unfortunately, and it has been very difficult to tell our story.â
On Wednesday the Palestinian foreign ministry said its ambassadors to Romania, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Austria were being called home for consultations. The European Union objected to the embassy move, but the four European countries broke with EU policy to attend the celebration.
âWe highly value our relations with all EU member states. Those relations are based on the commitment to international law, UN resolutions and human rights. Therefore we consider the participation in this event a contradiction to such values,â Amal Jadou, a Palestinian foreign ministry official, told the Associated Press.
The move came as Israel and Turkey traded tit-for-tat diplomatic expulsions after the deadly violence along Israelâs border with Gaza. A day after it expelled the Israeli ambassador, Turkey asked Israelâs consul general in Istanbul to leave as well.Fatal clashes in Gaza after opening of US embassy â" in pictures Read more
Israel, in turn, summoned a top Turkish diplomat to be reprimanded for the humiliation of Israelâs ambassador, Eitan Naeh, as he was kicked out of the country. The ministry accused Turkey of subjecting Naeh to a particularly severe security screening at the airport in Istanbul and inviting local Turkish media to capture the humiliation of him being frisked and forced to remove his shoes and jacket.
The exchanges came less than two years after the countries reconciled and exchanged ambassadors after six years of animosity.
Although a relative calm has descended on Gaza itself since Monday, the Israeli military reported that its tanks shelled a Hamas military post in the Gaza Strip after it said its own forces came under fire.
More than 100 people have been killed by Israeli fire since the protests began on 30 March, drawing international accusati ons that Israel is using excessive force. Israel says it is rightfully defending its sovereign border.
- Palestinian territories
- Middle East and North Africa
- United Nations
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