Human rights group criticizes Hamas assessment of Gaza conflict
The report submitted by Hamas to the United Nations on the Gaza conflict in early 2009 is "factually and legally wrong," a human rights group said Thursday after receiving a summary of the report.
US-based Human Rights Watch said the document, which claimed that all rockets launched from Gaza were aimed at military targets, was simply an attempt by the Gaza authorities to clear themselves of responsibility for the violence, DPA reported.
"Hamas can spin the story and deny the evidence," Joe Stork, the organization's deputy Middle East director, said. "But hundreds of rockets rained down on civilian areas in Israel where no military installations were located."
The Hamas report claimed that any civilian casualties from Palestinian rockets during the clash in late December 2008 and early January 2009 were accidental.
Israel was expected to submit its own report on the conflict to the UN on Friday.
The reports were a response to accusations of war crimes and possible crimes against humanity levelled at both sides by the findings of a UN fact-finding mission in September.
Friday also marks the three-month deadline set by the UN General Assembly for its own report on the conflict.