Comment at end
6th January, 2010
‘WAR CRIMINALS’ BANNED from BRITAIN
As Anjem Choudary preaches hate in this the land of his birth and the ‘heroic’ GGGGG (Gaza’s Garrulous Gorgeous George Galloway) is at the centre of scuffles in Egypt resulting in death and injuries, our useless government seems powerless to do anything about this shameful situation.
‘An Israeli military delegation has canceled an official visit to Britain, officials said yesterday, the latest in a string of politicians and army officials to put off travel to the United Kingdom because of fears of war crimes prosecution.
Israel complained that the practice, spearheaded by pro-Palestinian activists, is harming relations, and Britain’s visiting attorney general said an urgent solution must be found.
The Israelis called off their trip because their British Army hosts could not guarantee they would not be arrested, the Israeli officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter. Neither the Israeli military nor the British government would comment.’
But hang about – we’re all right.
DAVID’LL FIX IT. WON’T HE?
Baroness Scotland, the British Attorney General on a visit to Israel today said that the Foreign Secretary David Miliband was on the job. Would that be the same courageous and far-seeing Foreign Secretary who was on/off the job TWO years ago AND perhaps even again today in the unenviable task of saving the government, Labour party and country from the horns of its present Prime Minister, Gordon Brown dilemma?
Miliband’s mentor, Tony Blair must be turning in his political grave.
Tzipi Livni – War Criminal
(Oh no! Not another one … like Lincoln, Attlee, Major and … erm … Whatsisname)
Yes, we’ve been here before, once, twice or even three times in recent months and years.
Just a few weeks ago Tzipi Livni was said to have cancelled a visit to Britain because a pro-Palestine group had persuaded a judge to charge her with war crimes over Gaza.
And just over two years ago, in December 2007 there was this:
A serving Israeli minister cancelled an intended trip to Britain over concerns he could be arrested on war crimes charges. And didn’t he have diplomatic immunity then, as a government minister? And they STILL thought they could charge him?
What’s going on here, Brown & Miliband? You’re the lawmakers. Sort it out. (story here)
The foreign ministry said an “extreme leftist” organisation was likely to file a legal complaint against Public Security Minister Avi Dichter.
He was the domestic intelligence agency chief in 2002 when Isael bombed a Hamas military leader’s house killing him, his bodyguard and 15 civilians.
British law allows private citizens to file complaints of alleged war crimes.
“Minister Dichter has cancelled this trip following threats of him being arrested in Great Britain. This is an intolerable situation,” said his spokesman Barak Sari.
He had been invited to London as keynote speaker at a counter terrorism seminar at Kings College.
The visit was called off after the UK government had been unable to guarantee him immunity, his office said, in the event of a private citizens complaint leading to an arrest warrant for war crimes.
AND ON THE MILITARY CANCELLED TRIP –
The Guardian today: The government is determined to protect high-ranking Israeli officials from arrest in the UK, the attorney general said, as it emerged that a further visit by the Israeli military had been cancelled.
Speaking at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem today, Baroness Scotland said Israeli leaders should not face arrest for war crimes under the law of “universal jurisdiction”, following attempts by British lawyers last month to obtain a warrant for the former Israeli foreign minister Tzipi Livni.
“The government is looking urgently at ways in which the UK system might be changed to avoid this situation arising again,” Scotland said. “Israel‘s leaders should always be able to travel freely to the UK.”
Scotland’s assurance comes as the Guardian learned that the Israeli military had cancelled a visit by a team of its officers to Britain after fears they risked arrest on possible war crimes charges.
A group of officers, reportedly from the rank of major up to colonel, were invited by the British army for a meeting on military co-operation but cancelled last week. There were also reports today that Israeli officials feared possible arrest warrants and contacted British authorities to demand a guarantee that the officers would not be arrested.
Last week, British officials reportedly said they could offer no such guarantee and the Israeli military promptly cancelled the visit. The Israeli military, also referred to as the Israel Defence Force, declined to comment. News of the latest cancellation by high-profile Israeli politicians or army officers is likely to intensify debate around the ability of UK-based lawyers to obtain arrest warrants.
“The risk to senior Israeli figures does concrete and immediate damage to bilateral relations”, said the deputy foreign minister, Danny Ayalon, today.
“Organisations that are hostile to Israel try to exploit the legal channels and legal tools to threaten the Israeli and British decision-makers, including the authorities of the attorney general herself, and to thereby create political facts that should be determined around the diplomatic negotiating table.”The UK is one of a number of countries where private prosecutions can be brought for alleged war crimes committed abroad. Following the attempt to obtain an arrest warrant for Livni from a London magistrates’ court last month, the Guardian reported Foreign Office plans to change the legal process so that the attorney general would first approve warrants before suspected war criminals could be arrested. The “safeguards” were to apply to all visiting foreign leaders, not just Israelis, but provoked outrage from lawyers.
Meanwhile, what is GGGGG up to?
Glad you asked.
WELL DONE, GEORGE
George Galloway’s convoy sparks clashes, resulting in one dead Egyptian soldier and a dozen Palestinians injured (Pictures and story here)
Jerusalem (CNN) — Hundreds of Palestinians clashed with Egyptian security forces along the Gaza border Wednesday over the delay of an expected aid convoy, leaving a dozen Palestinians wounded and one Egyptian soldier dead, Egyptian and Palestinian sources said.
The convoy, spearheaded by British Parliamentarian George Galloway, had been delayed in the Egyptian port city of Al-Arish Tuesday after being refused entry at another Egyptian port.
The Hamas-organized rally began peacefully but degenerated into violence with hundreds of Palestinians throwing rocks across the border wall.
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Blair in the UAE: “People will learn to live with each other”.
Sorry to be a linguistic pedant, Mr Blair, but it’s ‘one another’ if there are more than TWO people doing the living. People will learn to live with one another.
Hopefully, says the optimist. Unlikely, says the realist.
Yours, with thanks for your efforts and optimism.
Tags: Avi Dichter, Baroness Scotland, Choudary, David Miliband, Egypt clashes, Egyptians soldier dies, George Galloway, Israel, Israeli military delegation cancels UK visit, Palestinians injured, scuffles, Shin Beth, Tony Blair, Tzipi Livni, war crimes charges, war criminals