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Source: Department of Public Information (DPI)
16 July 2010

Spokesperson's Noon Briefing

        Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York




**Questions and Answers


Question:  There are conflicting reports in the newspapers about who was behind this flotilla, which the Israel Defense Forces raided and were able to kill so many people.  I just want to know, when is the Secretary-General’s proposed commission going to begin working at all, if at all?  And what is the delay?  Why is there a delay?

Associate Spokesperson:  As far as that goes, we would be prepared to do something very quickly once we get agreement from the parties.  The Secretary-General has continued his efforts to talk to the parties, to win a positive response to his proposals.  And as I mentioned, in recent days, he has spoken with, among others, the Prime Minister of Israel and the Foreign Minister of Turkey.  So his high-level contacts on this continue.

Question:  Okay, which is the hold-up?  I mean, which country is a hold-up?

Associate Spokesperson:  Like I said, he has particular proposals that he is continuing to discuss with the parties, and he is hopeful for a positive response.

Question:  Just for our diary purposes, can you just then tell us what days we can expect what on the Goldstone [Report]?

Associate Spokesperson:  Well, I think I mentioned earlier that Israel has a deadline of until Monday for its own response.  After that, we expect the Secretary-General to put together a report that would go the General Assembly.  I don’t know precisely what day a report will come out, but I do expect sometime in the coming week we would, the Secretary-General would, submit a report to the General Assembly in line with the previous report that he sent.

Question:  Will the Israeli response be public?

Associate Spokesperson:  In the past, as you know, when the Secretary-General has sent his report to the General Assembly, which is a public document, it included the inputs from the various parties as annexes.  I can’t predict right now whether that would be quite the same way, but that is how we’ve handled it in the past.

Question:  Isn’t there an obligation on Hamas to respond, as well?

Associate Spokesperson:  We’ve received a response from the Palestinian Authority side, as well as from Switzerland already.

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For information media • not an official record

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