Internet InfoMedia israel sees vindication in u n s report but tensions between them rise
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A U.N. inquiry found support for Israel’s allegations of sexual violence in the Hamas-led Oct. 7 attack, but they remain bitterly at odds over the war in the Gaza Strip.

Israelis largely welcomed a U.N. report that supported allegations of sexual violence during the Hamas-led Oct. 7 attack, even as a top Israeli official accused the United Nations of not doing enough to address the findings — a sign of the rising tensions between them.

The U.N. report, released on Monday, found both “reasonable grounds to believe” that sexual violence against multiple people had occurred in at least three locations in Israel, and “clear and convincing information” that hostages taken to Gaza on Oct. 7 had been subjected to sexual violence, including rape.

On Tuesday, President Isaac Herzog of Israel said on X that the report was “of immense importance,” and he lauded it for its “moral clarity and integrity.”

But Israel Katz, Israel’s foreign minister, accused the U.N. secretary general, António Guterres, in a social media post of making a concerted effort to “forget the report and avoid making the necessary decisions.” In protest, Mr. Katz recalled Israel’s representative to the United Nations, Gilad Erdan, for consultations — a step short of withdrawing the ambassador for a longer term. Mr. Erdan was on a plane back to Israel on Tuesday, he said.

A U.N. spokesman, Stéphane Dujarric, said he did not accept — or even understand — the criticism, and that the report was done “thoroughly and expeditiously” and that “in no way, shape or form did the secretary general do anything to ‘bury’ the report.” U.N. officials alerted journalists in advance of the report’s release and held a news conference to discuss it, and the report received extensive news coverage.

Mr. Guterres has been an outspoken critic of Israel’s invasion of the Gaza Strip and has been pushing for an immediate and binding cease-fire. And there is deep distrust of the United Nations among Israelis, who see the body as biased against their country — a fact that was noted in the report on Oct. 7.

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