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Source: Department of Public Information (DPI)
8 February 2008

Spokesperson's Noon Briefing

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



The following is a near-verbatim transcript of today’s noon briefing by Michèle Montas, Spokesperson for the Secretary-General, and Janos Tisovszky, Spokesperson for the President of the General Assembly.


**Questions and Answers


Question:  Has the Secretary-General made any comments on the comments of the Foreign Minister of Egypt, where he described that any Gazans wanting to breach the border will be met by having their legs broken?  That was quoted in the Egyptian news agency [unintelligible].  Does he find those comments helpful to the present situation?

Spokesperson:  We have no comment on this at this point.  Yes?

Question:  Yes, Michèle, also with regard to the Gaza situation, has the Secretary-General given any thought yet to the issue of going to Gaza?  I thought there was an invitation from the Arab Group, there was an invitation to him.

Spokesperson:  Not at this point.  There are no plans as far as I know at this point.

Question:  And the second in response to that, has he given any thought to a response to Israel’s Supreme Court issuing the approval to cut back on the fuel and energy --

Spokesperson:  He has already expressed -- he’s not going to answer specifically what the Supreme Court of Israel said.  He has already expressed his feelings about the restrictions and I talked about that yesterday again.  Yes?


Question:  Thank you, Michèle.  I just wanted to follow up on Gaza and find out.  The situation in Gaza is going from bad to worse, and there is a suggestion in another Israeli publication that the way things are going, an independent State could be established in Gaza.  Is that the motive that is being established?  Does the Secretary-General -- what does the Secretary-General think about this?

Spokesperson:  Well as I just said, the Secretary-General has always talked about one Palestinian Territory.  And that one Palestinian Territory includes Gaza.  Gaza is not seen by the UN as a separate entity.

Question:  It is an Occupied Territory, right?

Spokesperson:  Of course.  Legally this is how the UN defines it.


Question:  In another area, since the Security Council was not even able to pass a presidential statement about Gaza, has anybody brought that to the General Assembly?  Or is there any chance the General Assembly will take up the situation of what is happening with the closures?

Spokesperson:  The chance is always there.  Let me refer you to -- because I don’t want to exhaust the attention span of your colleagues -- my briefing of a week ago.  It was on Thursday.  I gave a background on how special sessions, emergency special sessions are to be convened and how the resumption of the tenth emergency special session may be convened.  But, so far, the concrete answer for the question is that no Member State has made any approach to the President of the General Assembly for a reconvening of the tenth emergency special session or any kind of an idea of a special session.  This has not been done.  Yes, please?


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For information media • not an official record

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