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Annan says Israel should probe its demolition

Annan says Israel should probe its demolition of UN food warehouse in Gaza Strip

2 December – Reacting to the weekend destruction of a United Nations food warehouse in the Gaza Strip, Secretary-General Kofi Annan today called on Israel to investigate the incident.

"The Secretary-General is extremely concerned at the demolition by the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) of the World Food Programme (WFP) warehouse," a spokesman for Mr. Annan said in a press statement issued in New York.

According to WFP, over 500 tons of food was destroyed when the IDF entered Jaballia and blasted the agency's warehouse, which was clearly marked and held food for tens of thousands of Palestinians suffering from the current humanitarian crisis.

Mr. Annan voiced support WFP's request that the Israeli Government thoroughly investigate, and repeated his call on the Israeli authorities "to live up to their commitments and obligations to facilitate emergency humanitarian assistance in the occupied Palestinian territory," the spokesman said.

STATEMENT FOLLOWS

New York, 2 December 2002 - Statement Attributable to the Spokesman for the Secretary-General on the Middle East

The Secretary-General is extremely concerned at the demolition by the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) of the World Food Programme warehouse on Saturday night in the northern part of the Gaza Strip. He supports the request by WFP that the Government of Israel thoroughly investigate this incident.

The Secretary-General once again calls on the Israeli authorities to live up to their commitments and obligations to facilitate emergency humanitarian assistance in the occupied Palestinian territory.

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