A U.N. expert panel tasked with investigating possible war crimes in Gaza last year has asked for more time to complete its report.

The panel, commissioned by the U.N. Human Rights Council, wants to defer the submission of its report to the Geneva-based body until June.

It had been due to present the report on March 23, but said it needed more time because of the resignation of its former chairman, who came under fire for alleged bias against Israel.

The head of the 47-member Human Rights Council, German diplomat Joachim Ruecker, said Monday that he supported the request for a delay.

Israel has consistently rejected the mandate of the panel, which it claims follows a long tradition by the council of unfairly targeting the Jewish state.