U.N. rights body backs critique of Gaza flotilla raid

Wed Sep 29, 2010 5:37pm GMT

This left open the possibility that a firm move to have Israel put before the ICC, an action that would have to be endorsed in the U.N. Security Council, could be launched then if the already troubled peace talks lead nowhere.

The United States, the main promoter of the latest round of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, voted against the two texts from the 57-nation OIC, saying nothing should be done that would spoil the prospects for peace.

The flotilla raid report, presented to the council on Tuesday, said Israel had committed "grave violations of human rights law and international humanitarian law" in the incident, in international waters off Gaza

Israel, which maintains a blockade against Islamist Hamas-controlled Gaza, says pro-Palestinian activists on one of the ships aiming to deliver humanitarian supplies to the enclave, died when they attacked its commandoes.

The raid resolution, presented by Pakistan for the OIC and effectively calling on Israel to try troops guilty of violence, was passed in the 47-nation council with 30 votes in favour, one -- the United States -- against, and 15 abstentions.

The seven European Union members on the body abstained, joining the United States in saying that the text failed to recognise that another flotilla inquiry set up by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon took primacy.

(Editing by Alison Williams)

<p>An Israeli flag flutters in the wind as a naval vessel (not seen) escorts the Mavi Marmara, a Gaza-bound ship that was raided by Israeli marines, to the Ashdod port May 31, 2010. REUTERS/Amir Cohen</p>
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