Leading Palestinian human rights groups have accused the UN special adviser on the prevention of genocide of failing to fulfil her mandate after she issued only one statement on the war in Gaza – largely supportive of Israel – that has claimed 26,000 Palestinian lives.
In a statement issued in October, Alice Wairimu Nderitu, a Kenyan, omitted any criticism of Israel.
In a letter sent to the UN secretary general, António Guterres, on Wednesday, 16 Palestinian groups, including the umbrella body the Palestinian human rights council, said there had been a “glaring absence of any action in response to the sustained mass atrocities endured by Palestinians in Gaza”, and that this raised “significant concerns about the special adviser’s capability to execute her mandate with due effectiveness and impartiality”.
More broadly, the groups accused Nderitu of a dereliction of duty in failing to warn of a potential genocide, and said there had been a deafening failure by her to speak out about what had happened in Gaza.
For instance, she has made no comment on the international court of justice’s interim ruling in January on a case brought against Israel by South Africa, which provided a strong indication that the judges believed there was a credible risk to Palestinians under the genocide convention. [Continue reading…]