The UN commission of independent experts appointed to monitor Israeli and Palestinian probes into allegations of war crimes during Operation Cast Lead arrived in Gaza on Saturday.As far as I can tell, the UN had received preliminary reports from both Hamas and the PA on Cast Lead - and they had ignored Hamas' report completely.
Gaza's Foreign Affairs Ministry under-secretary Ahmad Yousef said the delegation arrived through the Rafah crossing between Gaza and Egypt to follow up on recommendations made in justice Richard Goldstone's report.
"The commission will come to monitor and evaluate the legal procedures on both the Israeli and Palestinian side on the Goldstone report, to ensure credibility and transparency during these investigations," he told Ma'an.
The committee, which includes jurists Christian Tomuschat, Mary McGowan and Davis Param Cumaraswamy, will meet with civil society representatives and UN organizations and groups as well as victims and witnesses who testified before the UN's independent fact-finding committee shortly after the winter 2008-09 war.
Members will also meet with the Hamas-run government's commission established to follow up with the recommendations of the report, Yousef added.
The committee was created in June 2010, specifically tasked with monitoring Israeli and Palestinian investigations into the deadly conflict in Gaza that left more than 1,400 people dead and injured 5,000 others.
Now, this new committee is apparently giving Hamas' report - and Hamas' "investigation" - legitimacy that the UN itself had denied the terror group. (That is, if we believe the Hamas website. Time will tell.)
The lead committee member is also problematic.