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Goldstone rejects Israel protests

Former South African judge Richard Goldstone has rejected Israel's claim the peace process in the Middle East could be harmed by his UN report on the offensive in Gaza. Goldstone said there was no peace process at present and Israel's foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman didn’t want there to be one. Goldstone’s report accuses both Israel and Hamas militants of committing war crimes. Speaking via a conference call with American rabbis, Goldstone said, “If the Israeli government set up an appropriate, open investigation, it will really be the end of the matter. That's where the report would end as far as Israel is concerned.” He was speaking after Lieberman said the Arab-Israeli conflict would not be resolved in the coming years, and people should “learn to live with it”. Palestinian and human rights groups say more than 1,400 Gazans were killed in the 22-day conflict, but Israel says the number was 1,166. Thirteen Israelis died in the conflict. Goldstone calls for the war crimes allegations to be referred to the International Criminal Court at The Hague unless the parties to the Gaza war investigate them effectively themselves.


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