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Posts Tagged ‘United Nations’

UN to Investigate US & UK Drone Strikes

In News, UK, USA on January 31, 2013 at 12:17 AM

01/24/2013

A United Nations investigation into targeted killings will examine drone strikes in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia, according to the British lawyer heading the inquiry.

Ben Emmerson QC, a UN special rapporteur, will reveal the full scope of his review which will include checks on military use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in UK operations in Afghanistan, US strikes in Pakistan, as well as in the Sahel region of Africa where the conflict in Mali has erupted. It will also take evidence on Israeli drone attacks in Palestinian territories.

About 20 or 30 strikes – selected as representative of different types of attacks – will be studied to assess the extent of any civilian casualties, the identity of militants targeted and the legality of strikes in countries where the UN has not formally recognised there is a conflict.

The inquiry will report to the UN general assembly in New York this autumn. Depending on its findings, it may recommend further action. Emmerson has previously suggested some drone attacks – particularly those known as “double tap” strikes where rescuers going to the aid of a first blast have become victims of a follow-up strike – could possibly constitute a “war crime”.

The inquiry will be co-ordinated through Emmerson’s UN office in Geneva. Among the team of experts working with him will be the former director of public prosecutions, Lord Macdonald QC, a former prosecutor at the international criminal tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, Sir Geoffrey Nice QC, and Dr Nat Cary, one of the UK’s most experienced pathologists who specialises in the interpretation of injuries caused by explosions.

The inquiry is the result of a request by several nations, including Pakistan and two permanent members of the UN security council.

Staff in Geneva have already begun to examine details of individual drone strikes. Emmerson says that, when assembled, his dossier of evidence may not lead to direct “attribution of legal liability” but will enable him to put allegations to the states responsible and obtain a response.

The Ministry of Defence, he said, had assured him of its willingness to co-operate. The influential US Council on Foreign Relations recently recommended that the US president should: “provide information to the public, Congress, and UN special rapporteurs – without disclosing classified information – on what procedures exist to prevent harm to civilians”.

Despite many US officials justifying drone strikes in Yemen, Pakistan and Somalia as acceptable as part of the global war on terrorism, others in the Washington administration have more recently acknowledged a need to demonstrate legal justification for targeted killings to the international community.

Emmerson told the Guardian: “One of the fundamental questions is whether aerial targeting using drones is an appropriate method of conflict … where the individuals are embedded in a local community.

“One of the questions we will be looking at is whether, given the local demography, aerial attacks carry too high a risk of a disproportionate number of civilian casualties.” “The explosion of drone technology [raises the question whether] the military dependence on UAVs carries an unacceptably high risk of civilian casualties.”

Between June 2004 and September 2012, according to research by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, drone strikes killed between 2,562 and 3,325 people in Pakistan, of whom between 474 and 881 were civilians, including 176 children.

Via TheGuardian

Canadian Government Tries to Disappear Report on IDF Murder of Four UN Observers

In Canada, Israel, Israhell, News, Other Leaks, Zionism on December 27, 2012 at 4:54 AM

12/25/2012

OttawaCitizen:

The Defence Department has quietly removed from the Internet a report into the killing of a Canadian military officer by Israeli forces, a move the soldier’s widow says is linked to the Conservative government’s reluctance to criticize Israel for any wrongdoing.

Maj. Paeta Hess-von Kruedener and three other United Nations observers were killed in 2006 when the Israeli military targeted their small outpost with repeated artillery barrages as well as an attack by a fighter aircraft.

IN early 2008, the Defence Department posted on its website a 67-page report from the Canadian Forces board of inquiry into the killing. The board found Hess-von Kruedener’s death was preventable and caused by the Israeli military.

But less than a year later, the report was quietly removed from the DND website and has since remained off-limits to the public through official channels.

Hess-von Kruedener’s widow, Cynthia, told the Citizen that the decision to remove the document from the public domain was made by DND and the government in an effort to protect Israel’s reputation.

“They don’t want people reading about it,” she said. “It’s embarrassing to the Israelis and, as we know, Prime Minister (Stephen) Harper has given his unconditional support to the Israelis.”

The circumstances surrounding Hess-von Kruedener’s death and the attempts by DND and the Canadian Forces to limit access to the board of inquiry report are outlined in an article in the new edition of Legion magazine, an Ottawa-based publication sent to members of the Royal Canadian Legion.

DND originally refused to provide the magazine with the previously public board of inquiry report, claiming the publication needed to use the access-to-information law to obtain a copy.

Legion magazine obtained a copy of the report by other means. It has now posted the report on its website.

In an email sent to the Citizen, DND confirmed it had removed the board of inquiry report from its website in early 2009 for security reasons “after it was discovered that some of its content is considered protected information.”

That explanation, however, doesn’t stand up to scrutiny as Legion magazine compared both the 2008 version and the 2012 copy issued under the access law, discovering that the latest version actually contains more information than the original.

The Legion article also raises questions about the disappearance from DND of a United Nations report into the killing. The document was used by the Canadian Forces for its board of inquiry and the UN report is cited in the Canadian report. But DND’s access to information branch claims it has done a thorough search of records and no such report could be found.

DND could not comment on claims by defence sources that hard copies of the board of inquiry report were also removed from military libraries.

The death of Hess-von Kruedener, a UN observer assigned to the Israeli-Lebanon border, has largely been forgotten.

The Israeli attack on the UN outpost began shortly after noon on July 25, 2006, prompting the UN deputy secretary general to almost immediately call the Israeli ambassador to the UN and complain.

Several hours later another artillery barrage hit the outpost. That was followed by another 16 artillery rounds hitting the base, destroying most of the buildings above ground and blowing the door off the underground bunker where Hess-von Kruedener and his fellow peacekeepers had taken refuge.

At one point, a general in charge of UN operations in Lebanon called the Israeli liaison officer and told him, “You’re killing my people.” Previously, the Israelis halted such attacks when protests were received.

Later that day, an Israeli fighter pilot directed a precision-guided bomb through the door of the UN bunker. The blast from the massive bomb killed the four men.

Gen. Rick Hillier, then the chief of the defence staff, later described the major’s death as a “tragic accident.”

Cynthia Hess-von Kruedener told the Citizen that the Canadian Forces didn’t inform her of her husband’s death. Instead, she learned he had been killed from a television news report.

The Legion article notes the Israelis had deliberately targeted the base. The base had been included in the Israeli military’s “targeting list” which they acknowledged was an error on their part.

Cynthia Hess-von Kruedener also takes issue with some of the remarks made by Harper about her husband. At the time of the killing, Harper questioned what Hess-von Kruedener was doing at the UN outpost.

She said the answer is simple: He was doing his job as ordered by the Canadian Forces and government of Canada. “Instead of asking why this happened, (Harper) turned it onto an innocent UN peacekeeper,” she said.

On Sept. 19, 2006, then-Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert wrote Harper, expressing his deep regret. Harper wrote back on Nov. 20, 2006, thanking Olmert for his “expression of condolences, for the Israeli government’s rapid investigation of the incident and for information provided to Canadian officials.”

However, the Legion magazine article noted that the Israelis refused to answer questions from Canada about the attack.

US Blocks UN Resolution Condemning Illegal Israeli Settlements

In Israel, Israhell, News, NWO, Other Leaks, Palestine, Palestine, Police State, USA, World Revolution, Zionism on December 21, 2012 at 7:22 AM

12/21/2012

The Obama administration has blocked a U.N. Security Council resolution condemning Israel’s latest expansion of settlements in the occupied West Bank.

Israel has announced the construction of thousands of new settlement homes following last month’s historic recognition of Palestine as a non-member observer state by the United Nations.

The White House has publicly criticized Israel but has refused to take punitive action, including withholding any of the billions in annual U.S. aid.

On Wednesday, each member of the U.N. Security Council, except the United States, issued statements condemning the settlement expansion after the United States refused to accept a binding resolution.

OpWCIT: WCITLeaks.org

In Anonymous, Big Brother, News, NWO, OpWCIT, Other Leaks, Police State, Science & Technology, World Revolution on December 10, 2012 at 9:37 PM

Bringing Transparency to the ITU

The forthcoming World Conference on International Telecommunications is marred by a lack of transparency. Access to preparatory reports, as well as proposed modifications to the ITRs, is limited to ITU member states and a few other privileged parties. This leaves civil society groups, and the public in general, in the dark. To foster greater transparency, we are offering a way for those in possession of such documents to make them publicly available. They can be anonymously submitted to us, and we will publish them here.

WCITLeaks.org

Related Link: OpWCIT: Russia, China & Others Withdraw Internet Regulation Push after Proposal is Leaked Online

OpWCIT: Anonymous Leaks Confidential Documents from Private ITU Meeting

In Anonymous, Big Brother, News, NWO, OpWCIT, Other Leaks, Police State, Science & Technology, World Revolution on December 10, 2012 at 9:27 PM

12/09/2012

CyberWarNews:

Leaked documents from a recent ITU meeting have exposed possible usages of deep packet inspection methods in next generation networks.

The leaked documents came to light a few days ago and have been posted to AnonPaste.

The leak file is a 17mb compressed zip file that contains 3 pdf documents.

One of the documents appears to be a complete final draft (the 17mb one)  which has most of the important information within it. If things like this actually do go into action it will mean that anyone’s Internet can be monitored extremely closely and it would all be “legal” for them to do so which is absolutely absurd and a invasion of overall privacy.

Related Link:

ITU Passes New Internet Standards, Ignoring Huge Privacy Implications

OpWCIT: WCITLeaks.org

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