By THÉRÈSE MARGOLIS
The government of Israel on Friday, May 28, formally registered its displeasure with Mexico on for voting in favor of the creation of a special commission to investigate the recent events that occurred during the armed confrontation against Israel and the Gaza Strip.
Mexican Ambassador to Israel Pablo Macedo Riba was summoned before the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs for consultations to question Mexico’s controversial vote.
Macedo met with the ministry’s Deputy Director General for Latin America and the Caribbean Modi Ephraim, who asked the Mexican diplomat for “clarification” on the Mexican vote in the Human Rights Council one day earlier in favor of the creation of an investigation commission against Israel following the 11-day Guardian of the Walls operation in mid-May, in which Israel defended itself from thousands of rockets being sent into its territory by the terrorist group Hamas.
In response to those attacks, Israeli Defense Forces targeted military buildings belonging to Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad in Gaza, although there were collateral damage casualties, with deaths and maimings on both sides.
Operation Guardian of the Walls constituted the first major conflict between the Israelis and Palestinians since 2014.
On Thursday, May 27, the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva agreed to investigate alleged war crimes committed and possible human rights abuse in both Israel and Palestinian territories.
The next day, the Israeli Embassy in Mexico released a statement noting that during his conversation with Macedo Riba, the Israeli government clarified that the expectation of Israel, which has long held friendly diplomatic and commercial ties with Mexico, was for those good relations to also be reflected in the international arena.
The Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs pointed out to the Mexican diplomat that Jerusalem expected Mexico to support Israel in difficult times, “in the same way that Israel has done with Mexico,” and to demonstrate understanding of the security challenges facing the Jewish state, while recognizing its inherent right and duty to protect its citizens, against whom Hamas fired thousands of missiles.
Ephraim told Macedo that “it is inconceivable that Mexico stands alongside countries hostile to Israel in a resolution that does not contribute to peace and that rewards Hamas terrorism.”
The 47-member council, to which Mexico belongs, adopted the resolution, presented by the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and the Palestinian delegation at the United Nations, calling for the investigation, with 24 states voting in favor, nine against and 14 abstaining.
Israel has declared that it will not cooperate with the probe, which it called “a biased and anti-Israel body,” adding that the council’s decision “is radically one-sided, does not mention the terror organization Hamas at all, and ignores the 4,300 missiles fired at Israeli civilians.”