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UN Security Council to hold emergency session over Gaza flotilla deaths
by Haartz (reposted)
Monday May 31st, 2010 8:03 AM
The United Nations Security Council will meet on Monday afternoon for an emergency session to discuss Israel's storming of a Gaza-bound aid flotilla, Security Council diplomats told Reuters
Diplomats said the meeting would start at 1 P.M., New York time but they gave no further details.

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called for a full investigation and expressed shock at Israel's storming of the flotilla.

"It is vital that there is a full investigation to determine exactly how this bloodshed took place. I believe Israel must urgently provide a full explanation," he said at a press conference in the Ugandan capital of Kampala.

The White House on Monday said it "deeply regretted" the loss of life and injuries sustained in the clashes after Israel Navy troops stormed a convoy of international activists bringing aid to the Gaza Strip, leaving at least 10 people dead.

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http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/un-security-council-to-hold-emergency-session-over-gaza-flotilla-deaths-1.293299
by UK Indep (reposted)
Monday May 31st, 2010 8:11 AM
The Foreign Secretary today "deplored" the loss of life during the interception of a flotilla of ships carrying aid to Gaza.

Up to 15 people were killed after Israeli commandoes boarded ships carrying 10,000 tonnes of aid en route from Cyprus.

William Hague said the British embassy was in "urgent contact" with the Israeli government, asking for more information.

He said: "I deplore the loss of life during the interception of the Gaza flotilla. Our embassy is in urgent contact with the Israeli government.

"We are asking for more information and urgent access to any UK nationals involved.

"We have consistently advised against attempting to access Gaza in this way because of the risks involved. But at the same time, there is a clear need for Israel to act with restraint and in line with international obligations.

"It would be important to establish the facts about this incident and especially whether enough was done to prevent death and injuries.

"This news underlines the need to lift the restrictions on access to Gaza in line with UNSCR (UN Security Council Resolution) 1860."

Mr Hague continued: "The closure (of access to Gaza) is unacceptable and counter-productive. There can be no better response from the international community to this tragedy than to achieve urgently a durable resolution to the Gaza crisis.

"I call on the Government of Israel to open the crossings to allow unfettered access for aid to Gaza, and address the serious concerns about the deterioration in the humanitarian and economic situation and about the effect on a generation of young Palestinians."

Mr Hague's criticism of the killings comes after several groups condemned the action taken by the Israelis.

Among those travelling on the flotilla of six were eight Irish citizens.

Michael Martin, Irish Foreign Affairs Minister, said: "The reports of up to 15 people killed and 50 injured, if confirmed, would constitute a totally unacceptable response by the Israeli military to what was a humanitarian mission attempting to deliver much needed supplies to the people of Gaza."

Palestinian rights group Friends of Al-Aqsa said that 28 British citizens were travelling on the ships, including its chairman Ismail Patel.

There has been no communication from him since the inexcusable attack, it said.

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http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middle-east/hague-deplores-gaza-aid-ship-deaths-1987767.html