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Political Affairs Chief To Visit Middle East

At Critical Juncture, UN Political Affairs Chief To Visit Middle East Next Week

New York, Nov 10 2005

With the peace process in the Middle East at a crucial phase and developments in Lebanon of heightened importance, the United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs will head to the region next week for talks with officials and other figures.

The trip will mark Ibrahim Gambari's first to the Middle East since assuming the helm of the Department of Political Affairs earlier this year. He is slated to visit Jordan, Lebanon, Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories between 13 and 21 November.

"Mr. Gambari intends to see firsthand the various UN operations carrying out political mandates in the region, while also taking the pulse of political developments at a critical juncture for Lebanon and for the Middle East peace process," UN spokesperson Marie Okabe told reporters in New York.

In addition to meeting with UN personnel in each country, Mr. Gambari will exchange views with a broad range of people, including senior government officials, leaders of political parties, religious authorities and members of the international community, Ms. Okabe said.

ENDS

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