Foreign Secretary Jack Straw has apologised to his Israeli counterpart over the attempted arrest of a general accused of war crimes.The Palestine Solidarity Campaign in the UK has written to the Foreign Secretary:
Dear Mr Straw,Of course there's nothing to stop others writing to him:
I am writing to express our total shock that, according to Israeli commentators, you have apologized to Israeli Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom for 'the discomfort caused to General (res.) Doron Almog,' against whom an arrest warrant was issued in the UK over alleged war crimes committed in Gaza. It is also reported that Prime Minister Tony Blair discussed an investigation of the circumstances of the issuing of the warrant with Ariel Sharon in New York and Israelis are expecting changes to the British system to prevent such warrants being issued.
It is already a matter of grave concern that Major General Almog was able to evade prosecution and return to Israel because of leaked information. These reports suggest collusion at the highest levels.
Amnesty International have "deplored the failure of the United Kingdom (UK) authorities to arrest Israeli army General Doron Almog when he arrived at London's Heathrow airport, describing this as a clear violation of the UK's obligations under both national and international law."
Interference by government with the judicial and legal process is to be abhorred in all cases. But since the UK presents itself as an upholder of international law, any attempt to thwart those bringing cases in support of Palestinian rights would suggest selectivity and encourage the perception of the government as hypocritical.
The Rt. Hon. Jack StrawRt.Hon = Right Honourable. Honestly, the things they say.
Sec.of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs,
King Charles Street,
London SW1A 2AH