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Israel may be committing war crimes in Gaza
2014.07.24 05:07:43

The conflict in Gaza was the topic at the UN Human Rights Commission emergency meeting in Geneva. The UN human rights chief said the agency is failing to protect Palestinians. Navi Pillay also suggested Israel may be committing war crimes in Gaza.



Tags: Gaza | Israel

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Ban Ki-Moon urges dialogue
2014.07.24 04:56:04

The UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon urges dialogue between Israeli and Palestinian leaders to end the bloodshed in Gaza.

As international community strives for a ceasefire in Gaza, there is no time to lose. The death toll is rising by the hour. I know there is great fear in Israel. Rockets continue to threaten Israeli civilians and disrupt normal lives of normal people. I have repeatedly condemned it, and will continue to do so. Also there is deep pain, anguish and loss among Palestinians. More than 600 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza, and almost 3,000 have been injured. The vast majority of civilians. As secretary-general of United Nations, I cannot and I will not be silent in the face of this tragedy. I mourn the loss of so many innocent lives in Gaza, and I grieve with the families. The violence must stop now as I said, dialogue must begin. That's now what I'm doing - to promote such a dialogue among the parties concerned the deadliest violence in years between Israel and Gaza



Tags: Gaza | Israel | Ban Ki-moon

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A foreign worker in southern Israel died
2014.07.24 04:54:50

A foreign worker in southern Israel died after being hit by a mortar round fired from the Gaza Strip, police said on Wednesday.

"There was a foreign worker killed by a mortar," police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told AFP, bringing the number of civilians in Israel killed by Gaza fire to three in 16 days of violence.

[AFP]



Tags: Gaza | Israel

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Hamas will not agree to a ceasefire
2014.07.24 04:52:57

Khaled Meshaal, the leader of Hamas' political bureau, has said that they would not agree to a ceasefire and then negotiate the issues of conflict, including the siege on the Gaza Strip.

"We cannot accept any proposal that does not include the lifting of the siege on Gazans," Meshaal said in a a press conference in Doha.

"Our least demand is the siege on Gaza to be lifted."

He added: "What is the price to pay? How many Israeli soldiers is Israel willing to see dead before the siege is lifted?"



Tags: Gaza | Israel | Hamas

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Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal
2014.07.24 04:51:00

Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal said that people of the Gaza Strip are just defending themselves against the Israeli aggression.

Speaking at a press conference in Doha, he said that Gazans are "the prey, not the predator" in what is happening in the enclave.

"Some thought that the people of Gaza were drained by the Israeli siege. They were surprised to see the brave fighters in front of them," he said.

Meshaal said Israeli army turned Gaza into a war zone, adding that Gaza has defended itself in three consecutive wars.



Tags: Gaza | Israel | Hamas

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American aviation authorities have extended a ban on US flights to Tel Aviv
2014.07.24 04:50:06

In a blow to Israel's economy and image, American aviation authorities have extended a ban on US flights to Tel Aviv for a second day, spooked by rocket salvoes out of the Gaza Strip, with many other global airlines also avoiding the country.

The country has already been hurt by mass tourist cancellations.

International carriers are on heightened alert after a Malaysian airliner was shot down over a combat zone in Ukraine last week.

"Hamas's success in closing the Israeli air space is a great victory for the resistance, a terrible failure for Israel that wrecks the image of Israeli deterrence," said Hamas official Abu Zuhri.

[Reuters]



Tags: Gaza | Israel

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UN Human Rights Council’s decision
2014.07.24 04:48:27

Israeli prime ministry said the UN Human Rights Council’s decision to launch an inquiry into Israeli offensive on Gaza is "a travesty and should be rejected by decent people everywhere".

"Rather than investigate Hamas, which is committing a double war crime by firing rockets at Israeli civilians while hiding behind Palestinian civilians," Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office said in a press statement on Wednesday.

The statement also said that Israel has gone to "unprecedented lengths to keep Palestinian civilians out of harm's way, including by dropping leaflets, making phone calls and sending text messages".

"By failing to condemn Hamas's systematic use of human shields and by blaming Israel for the deaths that are caused by this grotesque human shields policy, the  is sending a  message to Hamas and terror organizations everywhere that using civilians as human shields is an effective strategy," the prime ministry said.



Tags: Gaza | Israel

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John Kerry meeting with Ban Ki Moon
2014.07.24 04:36:03

John Kerry, the US secretary of state, said after his meeting with Ban Ki Moon, the UN secretary-general:

"We're working hard and I'm not going to get into the characterizing, but we have certainly made some steps forward. There is still work to be done but I'm very appreciative that the secretary-general is making great efforts, the UN is wholeheartedly in this effort to try to see if we can advance not just a ceasefire but a sustainable process of going forward, which is very important."


Ban said:

"This is the fifteenth day since the crisis began, we don't have much time to wait and lose. I really appreciate Secretary Kerry's very intensive, very dynamic engagement with the world leaders and as I have been doing. Together, we are now joining our forces and strength to make a ceasefire as soon as possible but for us, there is still some detailed way, which we have to make."

[AP]



Tags: Gaza | Israel | United States | John Kerry | Ban Ki Moon

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Death toll update
2014.07.24 04:33:54

At least 29 Palestinians have been killed in the Gaza Strip in bombardment by the Israeli army. The latest deaths bring the total death toll in the 16-day Israeli assault on Gaza to 658.

One civilian has been killed in Israel on Wednesday, bringing the total death toll of civilians who died in Israel by fire from Gaza to three people. 29 soldiers have been killed in the fighting. One other soldier remains missing, although the Israeli army says he is presumed dead.



Tags: Gaza | Israel

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Scene of total devastation
2014.07.24 04:32:45

Smoke rises on the Gaza City sky line following an Israeli air strike, around midday.

Shortly after Palestinian medics announce two dead and 45 injured from the attack.

When television crews arrive it is a scene of total devastation.

Residents said they had received no warning of the imminent attack.

"We were turning on the generators, for the past three days we do not have water or electricity.

"They did not warn us before, suddenly they attacked the building and the mosque. There is a martyr and a more than 40 injures, many are children. All the people who were in the mosque, got injured," said Resident of Gaza, Munes Kahwaji.

[AP]



Tags: Gaza | Israel

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No evidence of tampering with MH17 voice recorder: probe
2014.07.24 04:31:38

Dutch lead investigators into the shooting down over Ukraine of flight MH17 have said that data from the cockpit voice recorder was intact and had not been tampered with.

"The cockpit voice recorder was damaged but the memory module was intact. Furthermore no evidence or indications of manipulation of the cockpit voice recorder was found," the Dutch Safety Board (OVV) said on Wednesday as the black boxes were being analyzed in Britain.

The recorders, salvaged from the plane wreckage in eastern Ukraine, have been handed to the Air Accidents Investigation Branch headquarters in Farnborough, southwest of London.

"The cockpit voice recorder data was successfully downloaded and contained valid data from the flight. The downloaded data have to be further analyzed and investigated," the OVV said. [AFP]



Tags: Ukraine | Russia

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Afghans rally to denounce assault on Gaza
2014.07.24 04:30:34

Several hundred Afghan protesters rallied Wednesday in the heart of Kabul to denounce the fighting in Gaza Strip and the killings of Palestinian civilians caught up in the conflict.

Chanting anti-Israeli and anti-American slogans, the protesters marched through the center of the Afghan capital, carrying banners and photographs of Palestinian children killed during Israeli airstrikes in Gaza. [AP]



Tags: Gaza | Israel

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Malaysia jet victims' bodies arrive in Netherlands
2014.07.24 04:29:46

Two military transport planes carrying 40 coffins bearing victims of the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 have landed in the southern city of Eindhoven in the Netherlands.

Six days after the Boeing 777 was shot down over the battlefields of eastern Ukraine, the first bodies finally arrived on Wednesday in the Netherlands, the country that bore the heaviest toll in the crash that killed all 298 passengers and crew. [AP]



Tags: Ukraine | Russia | Malaysia | Netherlands

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According to the United Nations
2014.07.24 04:28:16

More children than fighters have been killed in Gaza

The Telegraph has drawn up an infographic demonstrating the number of children killed in Gaza.

Check it out:



Tags: Gaza | Israel

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Two Ukrainian military fighter jets shot down
2014.07.24 04:26:24

Two Ukrainian military fighter jets have been shot down in the east, according to the country's Defense Ministry.

The Sukhoi-25 fighters were shot down 1:30 pm local time Wednesday over an area called Savur Mogila.

Defense Ministry spokesman Oleksiy Dmitrashkovsky says the planes may have been carrying up to two crew members each. [AP]



Tags: Ukraine | Russia

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Palestinian foreign minister at the UN Human Rights
2014.07.24 03:38:52

"How many martyr must die before Israel puts an end to its aggression?", the Palestinian foreign minister says at the UN Human Rights Council.

Israel is perpetrating heinous crimes, battering residential areas and targeting journalists.



Tags: Gaza | Israel

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Ukraine says pro-Russia rebels pull back from Donetsk outskirts
2014.07.24 03:37:26

Pro-Russian separatists are leaving their positions on the outskirts of Donetsk and retreating towards the center of the eastern Ukrainian city, Ukrainian military officials said on Wednesday.

Residents said the rebels, who rose up in April demanding independence from Kiev in the mainly Russian-speaking east, had dug trenches in downtown Donetsk outside the main university, where they have been living in student dormitories.

Ukrainian government forces have pushed the armed rebels back to their two main strongholds, in Donetsk and nearby Luhansk, taking back control of villages and suburbs around them. [Reuters]



Tags: Ukraine | Russia

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Israeli representative at the UN Human Rights
2014.07.24 03:36:05

Israeli representative at the UN Human Rights Council says the Council's holding of the special session is misguided, ill-conceived and counterproductive to the ceasefire efforts.

"The people of Gaza are not our enemies", Israeli representative says at the UN Human Rights Council. He said that Israel is fully committed to international law and its military "makes great efforts" to minimize civilian casualties.

Hamas is committing war crimes, using civilians as human shields.



Tags: Gaza | Israel

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Ukraine to impose sanctions on Russian individuals, firms - PM
2014.07.24 03:32:20

Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk said on Wednesday Kiev would impose sanctions on Russian individuals and companies who support "terrorists" directly or indirectly.

He told a meeting of his ministers that he had set up a special committee which had 10 days to propose a list of individuals and companies to be covered by the punitive measures.

He did not give details of what form the sanctions would take. [Reuters]



Tags: Ukraine | Russia

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UN rights chief Navy Pillay
2014.07.24 03:16:57

UN rights chief Navy Pillay, in a speech at the emergency meeting on Gaza, gave "a few examples where there seems to be a strong possibility that international humanitarian law has been violated, in a manner that could amount to war crimes. Every one of these incidents must be properly and independently investigated".

UN rights chief Navy Pillay:

The continued failure to properly ensure accountability on both sides following earlier escalations of hostilities in Gaza is of serious concern. The culture of impunity for alleged violations of international law invites further transgressions and the victims of the past become victims again. War crimes and crimes against humanity are two of the most serious types of crimes in existence, and credible allegations that they have been committed must be properly investigated. So far, they have not been.

I reiterate my numerous calls for this blockade [on #Gaza] to be lifted once and for all.

The disregard for international humanitarian law and for the right to life, was shockingly evident for all to see in the apparent targeting on 16 July of seven children playing on a Gaza beach.



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