Israel: Women’s Group Tells Livni to Turn Herself In
December 16, 2009
Bethlehem – Ma’an - The Women’s Coalition for Peace sent a letter on Wednesday to Israel’s former Foreign Minister, Tzipi Livni, calling on her to cooperate with international investigations into her role in the assault on Gaza last winter, after a British court issued an warrant for her arrest on Monday.
The Israeli organization wrote in the letter, which was attached to a translated copy of the Goldstone report on alleged war crimes in Gaza, “We are convinced that if you refer to the report you will understand why British citizens and organizations have turned to the courts with a request to issue a warrant for your arrest.”
The letter added that the Goldstone report directly refers to remarks by senior political figures in Israel which encouraged indiscriminate attacks on civilians, in contradiction of international law.
It is in this context that Livni was quoted as saying, on 13 January 2009, “We have proven to Hamas that the equation has been altered. Israel is a state that, when its citizens are shot at, will respond insanely. And that’s a good thing.”
Furthermore, the letter states, “The Goldstone Report details a long list of indiscriminate attacks against civilian populations … In addition, the report surveys the extent of the damage to industrial infrastructure, food production, water facilities, sewage infrastructure and residential buildings; the use of Palestinian civilians as human shields and the targeting of medical staff.
“The testimony of Israeli soldiers corroborates the allegations made in the Report that during Cast Lead heinous war crimes were committed,” the group added.
“The attention of the Goldstone commission was drawn to the way the military operations affected women particularly adversely … Women suffered most of all from the attack which you helped lead, and for which you served as the international spokesperson. “As a feminist organization active in Israel, we consider that only a process of legal investigation and prosecution of war criminals by the international community has the power to bring a measure of justice to the women and men of Gaza.
“ In our opinion the correct reaction on your part to the Goldstone report would be a coming to terms with the wholesale murder with which you collaborated freely as a senior minister in the Israeli government as part of an election campaign.
“We call on you to cooperate with any international investigation that may be opened against you and to counsel your colleagues in the government and military to do the same.”
Israel and the UK confirmed on Tuesday that a British court issued an arrest warrant against its former Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni for charges related to Israel’s winter war on Gaza.
The incident marks the first time an Israeli official faced arrest in the UK in connection with the Gaza conflict.