UN Probe’s Schabas Admits ‘I Don’t Respect Israeli Leaders’

Canadian William Schabas resigned from leading the UNHRC "war crimes" probe of Israel on Monday, after new revelations regarding consulting work he did for the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) terrorist organization in 2012 joined previous allegations his blatant bias against Israel. 

Speaking with Yedioth Aharonot on Tuesday, after a former Goldstone Report judge was named in his stead, Schabas had harsh words of condemnation for Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

"Even if there was another committee, Netanyahu would come out against it. People like Netanyahu will accuse any committee of being anti-Israeli," said Schabas – who back in 2013 said he wanted to prosecute Israel for Gaza "war crimes," even if it meant “twisting things and maneuvering” in the international legal arena.

Responding to the work he did for the PLO, which never renounced terrorism and took part in attacks even after the 1993 Oslo Accords removed its international terrorist status, Schabas said "I have a long record of consulting activities and they didn't ask me about that work."

"I didn't imagine that it was important or relevant," he said of his work for the terrorist organization. "I'm a professional who is invited to give opinions to organizations and governments. I don't take sides and I didn't represent the Palestinians."

When asked about accusations that he is biased which reference on his past statements, including an admission to a global double-standard regarding Israel, Schabas shot back "you say biased, and I imagine that Netanyahu is biased. Is everyone who criticizes Israel biased?"

He then went on to explain that he resigned because of a "question over neutrality."

Schabas's resignation has been welcomed by Israeli leaders, with Netanyahu going on to call for the entire UN probe against Israel to be shelved.

When asked if his resignation was a victory for Israel, Schabas said "when the report is published, Israel will know if it succeeded or failed. It's childish to define the resignation as a victory."

Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman (Yisrael Beytenu) went as far as to say that the probe conducted by the former PLO consultant was like "Cain investigating the murder of Abel," a reference to the first murder in history, recorded in the Torah.

"That isn't worthy of a response," Schabas said when asked about the comment. "I didn't murder anyone. Is legal counsel to the PLO a mistake? Is criticizing Netanyahu a crime?"

And then Schabas took his attack on Israeli leaders further when asked if he was insulted by their criticism.

"I wasn't insulted. To be insulted you need to respect the people who criticize you, and I don't have respect for them," he retorted.

Schabas's replacement Mary McGowan Davis, already a member of the probe, was appointed to lead the inquiry on Tuesday, and the probe's results are to released next month.

McGowan Davis was part of the 2009 Goldstone committee which accused Israel of "war crimes" in the 2008-9 counter-terror Operation Cast Lead. Israel rejected the findings of the report which was widely assessed as being blatantly biased and incomplete, and even Judge Richard Goldstone, who led the committee, later retracted the core accusation of "war crimes" leveled in the report.

Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/190901

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