Amnesty urges probe into 'excessive' Israeli raid

31st May 2010, Comments 0 comments

Amnesty International called Monday for an independent investigation into a deadly Israeli raid on an aid convoy to Gaza, accusing the Jewish state of using "excessive force".

"Israeli forces appear clearly to have used excessive force," said Malcolm Smart, the rights organisation's director for the Middle East and north Africa.

"Israel says its forces acted in self-defence, alleging that they were attacked by protestors, but it begs credibility that the level of lethal force used by Israeli troops could have been justified.

"It appears to have been out of all proportion to any threat posed."

Amnesty called for an "immediate, credible and independent investigation" into the raid, which left up to 19 people dead, as well as for the immediate lifting of the blockade on Gaza.

"The blockade constitutes collective punishment under international law and must be lifted immediately," Smart said.

© 2010 AFP

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