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For Immediate Release: November 4th, 2009

National Coalition Criticizes Congressional Vote on Goldstone Report

(Washington, DC) - The US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation-a national coalition of more than 300 organizations working to change U.S. policy toward Israel/Palestine to support human rights, international law and equality-criticized today the House of Representatives for passing H.Res.867 by a vote of 344 to 36 with 22 abstentions.

The resolution calls on the Obama Administration "to oppose unequivocally any endorsement or further consideration of the `Report of the United Nations Fact Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict' in multilateral fora," and considers the report "irredeemably biased and unworthy of further consideration or legitimacy."

The UN Fact Finding Mission on the Conflict issued a report, known informally as the Goldstone Report after its lead investigator Judge Richard Goldstone, documenting violations of human rights, international law, war crimes, and possible crimes against humanity committed by all parties before, during, and after Israel's December 2008-January 2009 assault on the occupied Palestinian Gaza Strip. 

Last week, the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation sent Members of Congress talking points on H.Res.867, arguing that the resolution is "replete with inaccurate information about and misleading characterizations of the Goldstone Report. More significantly, its 'resolved' clauses undermine the commitment of the United States and the Obama Administration to the universality of human rights and the principle of holding accountable human rights violators."  In addition, Judge Richard Goldstone sent Rep. Howard Berman and Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen a four-page letter rebutting the inaccuracies about the Goldstone Report found in H.Res.867.

Josh Ruebner, National Advocacy Director of the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation, responded to today's vote on H.Res.867 by stating: "With its vote condemning the Goldstone Report, Congress yet again prefers to demonstrate its uncritical backing for Israel's human rights violations against Palestinians and shield Israel from any accountability for these human rights abuses rather than support universal principles of human rights and international law."

In September, the US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation organized an open letter to U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice, signed by more than 150 organizations, urging the Obama Administration to support the Goldstone Report and its recommendations.