Response to Amnesty report on Gaza conflict 5 Nov 2014

Response to Amnesty report on Gaza conflict

11/5/2014

Amnesty's report on this summer's conflict between Israel and the Hamas terror group accuses Israel of wrongdoing while producing no evidence.
MFA Spokesperson announcement
 
(Communicated by the MFA Spokesman)

Amnesty International's report on this summer's conflict between Israel and the Hamas terror group accuses Israel of wrongdoing while producing no evidence. At the same time, the report ignores documented war crimes perpetrated by Hamas, including the use of human shields, as well as ammunition storage and firing at Israeli civilian population centers from within schools, hospitals, mosques and civilian neighborhoods in Gaza.

The report does not mention the word terror in relation to Hamas or other armed Palestinian groups, nor mentions tunnels built by Hamas to infiltrate Israel and perpetrate terror attacks. By ignoring the nature of the enemy Israel faced in Gaza - a terror group recognized as such by the European Union, the United States and others - Amnesty's report fails to contribute to the important discussion needed to solve the conflict. Instead, Amnesty serves as a propaganda tool for Hamas and other terror groups.

In Israel, investigations are currently underway by several bodies, inside and outside the Israel Defense Forces, into over 90 incidents. Two criminal investigations are underway. These measures are dismissed by Amnesty as insufficient yet in comparison to Israel's rigorous procedures Amnesty's own methodology raises questions: The report was not written by Amnesty staff but by local contractors not mentioned by name and referred to only as "field workers". Their own credibility in producing the testimonies detailed in the report is never questioned; independent verification of their claims apparently not deemed necessary.

The extreme bias of the report is best displayed in its recommendations: Hamas is not mentioned, as if the group has no responsibility for the bloodshed; meanwhile, the report dismisses Israel's security challenges. Amnesty should understand that producing a narrow, decontextualized report restricts its capability to advance positive change.
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