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Cablegate: Instructions to Vote Against "Follow Up of The

VZCZCXYZ0007
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHC #4497 3110813
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 060122Z NOV 09
FM SECSTATE WASHDC
TO RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK IMMEDIATE 8520-8521
INFO RUEHTV/AMEMBASSY TEL AVIV IMMEDIATE 9816-9817
RUEHJM/AMCONSUL JERUSALEM IMMEDIATE 6048-6049
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA IMMEDIATE 0057-0058

UNCLAS STATE 114497

SENSITIVE

C O R R E C T E D C O P Y (ADDED SENSITIVE CAPTION)

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PHUM UN IS
SUBJECT: INSTRUCTIONS TO VOTE AGAINST "FOLLOW UP OF THE
REPORT OF THE UNITED NATIONS FACT FINDING MISSION ON THE
GAZA CONFLICT (GOLDSTONE REPORT)" RESOLUTION IN THE UN
GENERAL ASSEMBLY
1. (SBU) This cable is an action request for the United
States Mission to the United Nations in New York (USUN)

to call for a vote, if necessary, and vote against the
resolution entitled "Follow up of the Report of the
United Nations Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict
(Goldstone Report)," as well as deliver an explanation of
vote. USUN may also deliver the text in para 3 as a
statement prior to the vote if appropriate. Please see
paras. 2-3. End summary.

ACTION REQUEST
--------------

2. (SBU) Mission is instructed to call for a vote on the
above resolution, if necessary, and vote against it in
the United Nations General Assembly.

3. (U) USUN should draw on the following text for its
statement or explanation of vote:

Mr. Chairman,

The United States remains deeply concerned about the
human suffering of the Palestinian and Israeli peoples that
results from the ongoing Arab-Israeli conflict. The best
way to end that suffering is to bring about a
comprehensive peace in the region, including two states,
Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and
security. The United States is firmly committed to
pursuing that goal. As we urge the parties to restart
permanent status negotiations leading to the creation of
a Palestinian state, we should all be seeking to advance
the cause of peace and do nothing to hinder it.

The United States strongly supports accountability for
human rights and humanitarian law violations in relation
to the Gaza conflict. Our goal is to achieve genuine
accountability in a way that respects internal processes
and the ongoing efforts to restart permanent status
negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.

As the United States made clear in Geneva, we believe
that the Goldstone Report is deeply flawed -- including its
unbalanced focus on Israel, its sweeping conclusions of
law, the excessively negative inferences it draws about
Israel's intentions and actions, its failure to deal
adequately with the asymmetrical nature of the Gaza
conflict, its failure to assign appropriate
responsibility to Hamas for its decision to base itself and its
operations in heavily civilian-populated urban areas, and
its many overreaching recommendations.

First, let me point out that we appreciate that the
resolution under consideration calls on both Israel and
the Palestinians -- although it does not name Hamas -- to
pursue investigations of the allegations that pertain to
each of them in the Report. This is an advance over the
original one-sided mandate provided by the Human Rights
Council to the Goldstone Commission. We will continue to
call for all parties to meet their responsibilities and
pursue credible domestic investigations.

Nevertheless, we also have real concerns about this
resolution.

Given the far-reaching legal conclusions and
recommendations of the 575-page Goldstone Report,
including findings that have serious implications for
conflicts in other parts of the world, we do not think it
appropriate to endorse the Report in its entirety.

Attempting, as this resolution does, to press the
Security Council to take this matter up is equally
unconstructive.
The Security Council is already seized of the situation
in the Middle East and holds monthly meetings on the topic,
the only subject on the Council's entire agenda that is
discussed with such frequency. As many member states
have made clear, the appropriate forum for discussion of this
report is the Human Rights Council.

The resolution also unhelpfully introduces international
supervision of the investigations to be undertaken by the
parties that would interfere with the parties' ability to
conduct their own processes.

The proposed convocation of the High Contracting Parties
to the Fourth Geneva Convention is also unnecessary and
unproductive. Convening a conference of the Contracting
Parties to the Geneva Convention for the purpose of
spotlighting one country would only heighten divisions
and could set back the process of restarting permanent status
negotiations. This and the other imbalanced references to
the parties throughout the text -- including the failure
to mention Hamas by name -- convey the impression that
this body is, yet again, handling Arab-Israeli issues in
an unbalanced manner.

For these reasons, we will vote against the resolution.
But we believe that lifesaving progress can be made if we
can lift our sights and look toward a more hopeful
future.
The United States will continue to work resolutely in
pursuit of a just and lasting peace.

POINT OF CONTACT
----------------

4. (U) Please contact Paul Kruchoski at (202) 736-7038
with follow-up questions or requests for additional
information.
CLINTON

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