Human Rights Council endorses Goldstone report
Sunday, 18 October 2009 14:32


On 16 October 2009, the Human Rights Council adopted a resolution endorsing the 'Goldstone report' following its 12th special session on the situation of human rights in the occupied Palestinian territories. The resolution was adopted by 25 votes in favour, 6 votes against  (Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Slovakia, Ukraine, US) and 11 abstentions (EU States, Cameroon, Gabon, Burkina Faso, Japan, Mexico, Norway, Republic of Korea, Switzerland). Five States did not cast a vote on the controversial resolution (Angola, France, Kyrgyzstan, Madagascar, UK). 


The debate during the special session saw all States but Israel and the US express the view that the Goldstone report was 'serious' and merited careful consideration by the Council. The vast majority of States also underlined the need for independent investigations by Israel and the Palestinians into the allegations of serious violations of human rights law and international humanitarian law  committed during the Gaza conflict.


The resolution also condemned Israeli practices in the occupied Palestinian territories, in particular in East Jerusalem. While some observers expressed the view that this detracted from the focus on the Goldstone report, others seems to have endorsed the resolution as a result. China and the Russian Federation noted that they would have abstained had the resolution only focused on the Goldstone report as they had serious reservations about its recommendations regarding referral to the Security Council and the International Criminal Court.


The resolution invites the General Assembly to consider the report during its current session that has just begun. It remains to be seen how States will follow up on this sensitive issue in New York. At the same time, the Secretary-General has been asked to report back to the Human Rights Council on the implementation of the Goldstone report's recommendations at its next session in March 2010.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 24 August 2010 17:26
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