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Ottawa will support an “accountability system 

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Minister of Foreign Affairs Mélanie Joly

Radio-Canada

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Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly indicated that Canada would eventually support an “accountability system” to investigate Israel's military conduct in its war with Hamas.

However, she did not specify the contours of this accountability system.

Ms. Joly spoke on the subject on the show Power & Politics(New window), on CBC, Monday evening.

Since Hamas' attack on Israel on October 7, Canada has consistently supported Israel's right to defend itself in accordance with international law .

The host ofPower & Politics, David Cochrane, asked Ms. Joly how Canada views the Israeli military campaign in light of reports from humanitarian groups that Israel is violating international law and the growing number of deaths in Gaza.

< h3 class="!font-display text-5 xsToSm:text-4 leading-5 font-bold">Middle East, the eternal conflict

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I think that at the heart of our foreign policy since World War II has been Israel's right to exist, which is fundamental, and at the same time, the protection of civilians. And it's clear that there are tensions between those two priorities right now, she said.

Ultimately, of course, we would support any form of accountability […] system at the international level that would examine this issue.

A quote from Mélanie Joly, Minister of Foreign Affairs

She gave a similar response last week on the show 24•60 on ICI RDI, where she discussed future investigations which will certainly take place on these issues [the bombing of civilian populations, Editor's note].

I think it matters how Israel behaves in Gaza. For what? Because we must ensure that Palestinian civilians are better protected. Currently, we have 18,000 Palestinian civilians and soldiers killed – 70% of these people were women and children. What is happening now is therefore very worrying, she stressed toPower & Politics.

Contacted by CBC News, the Israeli embassy in Canada declined to comment on Ms. Joly's statements.

In November, Volker Türk, the United Nations high commissioner for human rights, said that Israel and the Hamas had both committed war crimes. (New window) He highlighted the atrocities perpetrated by Hamas on October 7 and denounced the collective punishment imposed by Israel on Palestinian civilians.

Israel denies violating international law and says its army does not deliberately target civilians. The Jewish state claims that it is Hamas which puts civilians in danger, by carrying out its operations from civilian infrastructure such as hospitals or schools.

The UN General Assembly is expected to vote Tuesday on a non-binding draft resolution demanding an immediate humanitarian ceasefire between Israel and Hamas.

The vote comes after the United States vetoed a United Nations Security Council resolution last Friday calling for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza.

Asked about this vote which should take place on Tuesday, Ms. Joly indicated that discussions are underway on the position that Canada will take.

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A view of the destruction in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip

We are still reviewing the different versions of the resolution. We negotiate. Various amendments are currently being discussed. So I will have more to say tomorrow on this specific issue, she said.

We must ensure that the violence stops. The cycle of violence does not help Israel's security in the long term and we must ensure that the way Israel behaves is consistent with international law.

A quote from Mélanie Joly, Minister of Foreign Affairs

In October, Canada abstained from voting on a United Nations General Assembly resolution calling for a immediate, lasting and sustained humanitarian truce after failing to amend the resolution including an explicit condemnation of the Hamas attacks of October 7.

With CBC

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