Israeli Justice Minister Tzipi Livni.jpg
Photograph: Photo by The Israel Project, used under CC BY-SA

Israel's former foreign minister, Tzipi Livni, was summoned by Scotland Yard over alleged war crimes committed by her government during the 2008-09 first Gaza war, the Israeli Foreign Ministry announced Sunday.

Livni, 57, is currently a member of the opposition. 

The Foreign Ministry said it intervened when Livni received the British Metropolitan Police request for an interview during her visit to Britain late last week.

It helped schedule a meeting with Tobias Ellwood, the minister in charge of Middle Eastern affairs, who made her trip a "state visit," thereby granting her diplomatic immunity, Israeli media reported.

An Israeli Foreign Ministry statement sent to dpa on Sunday strongly condemned the police request, saying: "We would have expected different behaviour from a close ally such as the UK.

"Israel will do all in its power to ensure that all of its citizens are not the subject of the cynical, political abuse of otherwise legitimate legal tools."

Opposition and Zionist Union leader Isaac Herzoc sent a letter to British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond strongly condemning the incident.

A lawmaker for the centre-left Zionist Union, Livni is actually considered a dove, who continues to speak out for new peace talks with the Palestinians despite an increasingly disillusioned Israeli public.

She was foreign minister during a devastating three-week offensive in Gaza in December 2008 and January 2009 to curb Palestinian rocket attacks, an operation she supported.

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