The Israeli Foreign Ministry has summoned the Philippines ambassador, Macairog Alberta For a “clarification” after his country voted last week to form an inquiry commission into Israel’s violations in the Gaza Strip.
On Thursday, the Philippines voted at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in favour of the establishment of an investigative committee against ‘Israel’ over its latest aggression on the Gaza Strip, in which at least 279 Palestinians were killed, including 69 children and 40 women.
The Times of Israel said the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ deputy director-general for the Asia-Pacific, Gilad Cohen, had told the ambassador that his country’s vote was “unacceptable”.
“It is unacceptable that a country like the Philippines, which itself endures radical and murderous Islamist terrorism in the south of the country, would support a draft resolution that ignores the Hamas terrorist organization’s war crimes,” Cohen is quoted as saying in a Foreign Ministry statement.
“Israel expects from friendly countries like the Philippines not to support proposals that strengthen terror and to stand alongside us at this hour,” he added.
Ambassador of the Philippines to Israel summoned for a clarification discussion at @IsraelMFA following the Philippines’ vote at the HRC in favour of the establishment of an investigative committee over events surrounding Operation Guardian of the Walls.
— Israel Foreign Ministry (@IsraelMFA) May 30, 2021
The ambassador, however, confirmed there was a discussion with the Israeli side on the UNHRC voting.
At the Laging Handa briefing yesterday, Alberto said the Philippines was trying to soften the impact of its vote so as not to affect relations with ‘Israel’.
“You can be assured that the DFA (Department of Foreign Affairs), the Philippine embassy is doing everything to maintain our good relations,” he added in Filipino.
Last week, the UNHRC adopted a resolution establishing a broad, international investigation into violations surrounding Israel’s latest aggression on the Gaza Strip and “systematic” abuses in the Palestinian territories and inside the occupied territories.
The Philippines was among the 24 UNHRC members that voted in favour of the resolution.