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UN HR Experts Shock At Scale Of Attacks In Gaza

Published: Sat 3 Jan 2009 02:56 PM
UN HUMAN RIGHTS EXPERTS EXPRESS SHOCK AT SCALE OF ATTACKS IN GAZA
New York, Jan 2 2009 1:10PM
A group of independent United Nations human rights experts today said it was “deeply alarmed” at the continuing violence in Gaza and called on all parties to end attacks putting civilian lives at risk.
“Both air strikes by Israeli Government forces and rocket attacks from Gaza into Israel are resulting in inexcusable loss of life and placing the civilian populations in the affected areas in extreme danger,” said Asma Jahangir, chairperson of the experts’ coordinating body, said in a statement.
She stressed that international human rights law “imposes binding obligations on all parties in situations of armed conflict.”
The chairperson said that neither Israel’s use of disproportionate force, missiles launched from Gaza, nor the general disregard for the safety of non-combatants can justify either side’s aggression.
“They constitute clear violations of international human rights and international humanitarian law,” she said.
The UN experts voiced particular concern at the impact of the current violence and destruction of vital infrastructure on the already dire humanitarian situation in Gaza and called on all parties to ensure access for humanitarian relief efforts and supplies.
“Independent human rights monitoring, including by the various UN Special Procedures, is particularly crucial in these circumstances which result in an exceptionally broad range of human rights violations.”
Independent experts, known as special rapporteurs, serve in an autonomous unpaid capacity and report to the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.
Jan 2 2009 1:10PM

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