Israel Won’t Allow UN Panel to Question Soldiers

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Aug. 10 (Bloomberg) — Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said
Israel wouldn’t cooperate with a United Nations probe into its May 31
naval raid on a Gaza aid flotilla if the UN tries to question soldiers
who took part in the operation.

“Israel will not cooperate with, or take part in any panel that
seeks to interrogate Israeli soldiers,” said a text message sent late
last night by Netanyahu’s press spokesman Nir Hefez.

The message was sent after UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said
earlier that he hadn’t agreed with Israel to prevent the inquiry from
questioning military personnel. Israeli soldiers killed nine people
aboard the Turkish ship Mavi Marmara, when it tried to breach an Israeli
sea blockade of the Gaza Strip.

Israel agreed to cooperate with the UN probe only after ‘it was
clarified from the start that Israeli soldiers or any of the military
wouldn’t be investigated or questioned by anybody outside of the army,”
Hefez told Israel’s Army Radio today.

The UN panel, led by former New Zealand Prime Minister Geoffrey
Palmer and former Colombian President Alvaro Uribe, will hold its first
meeting today in New York. Ban said the panel’s main job will be to
review and examine reports by Turk… >>>

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