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To Member States of United Nations General Assembly

March 8th, 2009

Your Excellency, Head of UN Permanent Mission and Delegation in New York,


My sincere apology for encroaching on your time, but the matter that is drawn to attention is of world public concern, which, I am sure, has been of great concern to you as well. The recent armed attack on the Gaza Strip of Palestine has caused world-wide alarm for its severity, the large number of civilian casualties, half of whom were women and children, the massive destruction, the creation of a new wave of refugees of the same refugees of previous Israeli attacks, with no shelter, the alleged use of prohibited weapons, and a crippling siege, have raised very serious questions about Israelís culpability that, in the view of many, amounted to war crimes and crimes against humanity that many believe should be considered by an independent international tribunal.


To test this, our organisation, which is an NGO with consultative status with the United Nations, placed a petition on the Internet calling upon the President and Members of the UN General Assembly to exercise their power under the UN charter, and in view of the particular responsibility of the General Assembly concerning the question of Palestine, to create a special tribunal to try Israeli leaders for the crimes allegedly committed by them in this recent armed attack. The response to the petition has been overwhelming coming from so many countries from so many different people. The signatories supporting the petition believe that no state, including Israel, should be above the law and no state, including also Israel, should be beyond accountability for the crimes it may commit. The General Assembly has played a pivotal role in the liberation of former colonies and occupied territories, and in sponsoring conventions on war crimes, crimes against humanity and human rights in general. The turn of justice, peace and liberation for the people of Palestine has been so much overdue, while they continue to suffer from unprecedented harsh occupation and denial of rights. It is an opportune moment for the General Assembly to assert its authority for the cause of peace and justice in the face of attempts to re-establish a world order of domination by the few over the many. It is hoped that the creation of this court will bring a deeper sense of respect for human life on both sides of the conflict and will contribute to putting an end to an endless cycle of violence that has brought so much suffering and anxiety for both Palestinians and Israelis.


We attach a copy of the petition and the last page of signatories to date, and Your Excellency may visit the website to see the response .


We appeal to Your Excellency, on behalf of the tens of thousands who signed the petition, to act, and, in doing so, the General Assembly will add its vital contribution, in the name of humanity, to a world in which respect for the rule of law, human rights and the right of every people to live in dignity and peace will prevail.


Respectfully yours,


Dr Anis Al-Qasem

Secretary General