Netanyahu blasts UN report: 'Obsessive hatred of Israel'

"Israel rejects report outright," PM says of UN probe, which asserted Israeli action against Gaza rioters "may constitute war crimes."

Arutz Sheva Staff and AFP ,

Flash 90

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu condemned the report of the UN Human Rights Council about the Israeli response to Gaza riots.

"Israel rejects outright the report of the UN Human Rights Council. The council sets new records of hypocrisy and lies, out of obsessive hatred of Israel, the only democracy in the Middle East.

“Hamas is the one which fires rockets at Israeli civilians, throws bombs and carries out terrorist activities during the violent demonstrations along the fence.

“Israel will not allow Hamas to harm Israeli sovereignty and its citizens and will protect its right to self-defense. IDF soldiers will continue with determination to defend Israeli citizens against attacks by Hamas and terrorist organizations funded by Iran, which declares its intention to destroy Israel."

Netanyahu was responding to a UN probe which on Thursday said that the Israeli response to 2018 Gaza riots "may constitute war crimes."

"Israeli soldiers committed violations of international human rights and humanitarian law. Some of those violations may constitute war crimes or crimes against humanity," the chair of the "UN Independent Commission of Inquiry on the protests in the Occupied Palestinian Territory," Santiago Canton, said in a statement.

The inquiry, set up by the UN Human Rights Council, investigated possible violations from the start of the riots on March 30, 2018 through to December 31.

"More than 6,000 unarmed demonstrators were shot by military snipers, week after week at the protest sites," it said.

"The Commission found reasonable grounds to believe that Israeli snipers shot at journalists, health workers, children and persons with disabilities, knowing they were clearly recognizable as such," it said.

The investigators specified that there were reasonable grounds to believe that Israeli troops killed and injured Arabs "who were neither directly participating in hostilities, nor posing an imminent threat."

The UN team also dismissed claims by Israel that the protests were aimed to conceal acts of terrorism.

"The demonstrations were civilian in nature, with clearly stated political aims," the statement said.

"Despite some acts of significant violence, the Commission found that the demonstrations did not constitute combat or military campaigns."