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Abbas probes failure to endorse report

Palestinian workers with the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) clear the rubble at the former Palestinian central security headquarters and prison in Gaza on July 23, 2009. The facility was hit by Israeli warplanes on Dec. 28, 2008. Removing the rubble is one of the first steps on the ground taken by the UN as part of the reconstruction plan for Gaza after the war which ended in January, 2009. (UPI Photo/Ismael Mohamad)
Palestinian workers with the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) clear the rubble at the former Palestinian central security headquarters and prison in Gaza on July 23, 2009. The facility was hit by Israeli warplanes on Dec. 28, 2008. Removing the rubble is one of the first steps on the ground taken by the UN as part of the reconstruction plan for Gaza after the war which ended in January, 2009. (UPI Photo/Ismael Mohamad) | License Photo

JERUSALEM, Oct. 7 (UPI) -- A Palestinian committee is investigating why the Palestinian government failed to endorse a U.N. report alleging Israeli war crimes during January's offensive.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas ordered the investigation Sunday to learn why his government didn't uphold South African Judge Richard Goldstone's findings on Operation Cast Lead, the Maan news agency said Wednesday.

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Israel refused to accept the report's conclusions, calling it one-sided after Goldstone accused the Jewish military of committing war crimes during the Gaza offense.

Officials in the Fatah party and Hamas harshly criticized Abbas for failing to endorse the U.N. report.

Syrian press reported this week Abbas's planned visit to Damascus was canceled because of the Palestinian Authority's failure to endorse the U.N. report.

Palestinian official Saeb Erekat told the news agency, Abbas will be presented with the initial findings of the investigation Thursday when he is due to return from abroad.

Senior Abbas adviser Yasser Abed Rabbo admitted Wednesday the Palestinian leadership erred by suspending action on the Goldstone Report, The Jerusalem Post reported.

Abbas reportedly bowed to U.S. pressure and agreed to suspend a push for a war crimes tribunal last week, but his aides insisted they were only delaying, not dropping, action, the newspaper said.

The United Nations Wednesday planned to deliberate Libya's request to discuss the Goldstone report in a closed-door session, al-Arabiya reported.

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