The Associated Press headline for this item is “U.N. rights body condemns Israel for war,” which offers a highly misleading impression of the circumstances of the resolution’s adoption and the level of consensus on its content. From AP:
GENEVA – The U.N. Human Rights Council on Friday condemned Israel for “massive bombardment of Lebanese civilian populations” and other “systematic” human rights violations, and decided to send a commission to investigate.
European countries, Japan and Canada voted against the resolution, primarily because it
lacked balance in failing to name the Hezbollah militia. The United States, which is an observer, has no vote on the 47-member council.
Israeli Ambassador Itzhak Levanon said the discussions were one-sided, referring only to civilian losses in Lebanon while ignoring the deadly Hezbollah missile attacks on northern Israel.
“It is painful and regrettable that the council made a distinction between the sufferings, the blood and the deaths, and this failure will forever be written in the annals of that body,” he said.
The council voted 27-11 to pass the resolution, which was proposed by the 57-country Organization of the Islamic Conference. Among those voting for the resolution were China, Russia, India, Cuba, Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Peru, Ecuador, Uruguay, Zambia and South Africa. Guatemala and seven other countries abstained.
Although the OIC refused to insert “Hezbollah” in the text, it amended its wording to make an indirect reference to the Lebanese militia, urging “all concerned parties to respect the rules of international humanitarian law (and) to refrain from violence against the civilian population.”