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Israeli state comptroller orders Gaza probe

JERUSALEM (AA) – Israeli State Comptroller Yosef Shapira, who oversees Israeli government policies and activities, on Wednesday ordered an investigation into political and military decisions taken during Israel's weeks-long onslaught on the Gaza Strip. "[Shapira] ordered an investigation into Israeli decision-making mechanisms at the political and military levels in light of claims that Israel violated international law," read a statement issued by Shapiro's office and broadcast by Israeli Army Radio. The move comes two days after the Geneva-based United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) launched an "independent commission of inquiry" into possible war crimes committed by Israel in the Palestinian territories – especially in the Gaza Strip – during its "Operation Protective Edge," which has left almost 2000 Palestinians dead since it began early last month. Shapira is accountable to the Knesset (Israel's parliament), which earlier this week decided to launch its own probe into the military operation. Israel had initially said the operation – one of its deadliest-ever offensives against the blockaded Gaza Strip – was aimed at halting rocket attacks from Gaza. Since July 7, at least 1955 Palestinians – mostly civilians – have been killed and nearly 10,000 injured in devastating Israeli attacks on the embattled coastal enclave. Over the same period, thousands of homes in Gaza have been destroyed by unrelenting Israeli bombardments.

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