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In the last two days, Israeli occupying forces also sent tanks and bulldozers into the territory under full Palestinian control in several locations in the Gaza Strip and West Bank, including the town of Al-Bireh. The tanks pounded targets, causing extensive physical damage and injuries to civilians in the area, before they were withdrawn.
Allow me, at this time, to refer also to the recent letter by the Israeli Representative to the United Nations (A/56/69-S/2001/459). The letter follows the usual pattern of lies and distortions and attempts to falsely assign blame, as well as complete disregard for facts, international law and existing agreements. In this regard, we wish to state clearly that the Palestinian Authority has nothing to do with the weapons Israel says it captured in a boat off the coast of the Gaza Strip earlier this week. Further, we reiterate that the Israeli settlers, who have been illegally transferred by the occupying Power to the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including Jerusalem, in grave breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 and in total violation of relevant Security Council resolutions, remain the exclusive responsibility of the occupying Power. Moreover, we hold the Israeli Government wholly responsible for the war crimes and other atrocities being committed by the Israeli occupying forces against the Palestinian people and for Israeli State terrorism being waged against Palestinian civilians and targets throughout the Occupied Territory.
In follow-up to my previous letters on this very dangerous and grave issue dated from 29 September 2000 to 9 May 2001 (A/55/432-S/2000/921; A/55/437-S/2000/930; A/55/450-S/2000/957; A/55/466-S/2000/971; A/55/474-S/2000/984; A/55/490-S/2000/993; A/ES-10/39-S/2000/1015; A/ES-10/40-S/2000/1025; A/ES-10/42-S/2000/1068; A/ES-10/43-S/2000/1078; A/ES-10/44-S/2000/1093; A/ES-10/45-S/2000/1104; A/ES-10/46-S/2000/1107; A/ES-10/47-S/2000/1116; A/ES-10/48-S/2000/1129; A/ES-10/49-S/2000/1154; A/ES-10/50-S/2000/1173; A/ES-10/51-S/2000/1185; A/ES-10/52-S/2000/1215; A/ES-10/53-S/2000/1247; A/ES-10/54-S/2001/7; A/ES-10/55-S/2001/33; A/ES/10/56-S/2001/50, A/ES-10/57-S/2001/101; A/ES-10/58-S/2001/131 A/ES-10/59-S/2001/156; A/ES-10/60-S/2001/175; A/ES-10/61-S/2001/189; A/ES-10/64-S/2001/209; A/ES-10/65-S/2001/226; A/ES-10/66-S/2001/239; A/ES-10/67-S/2001/255; A/ES-10/68-S/2001/284; A/ES-10/69-S/2001/295; A/ES-10/70-S/2001/304; A/ES-10/71-S/2001/314; A/ES-10/72-S/2001/332; A/ES-10/75-S/2001/352; A/ES-10/76-S/2001/372; A/ES-10/79-S/2001/418; A/ES-10/80-S/2001/432; A/ES-10/81-S/2001/447; and A/ES-10/82-S/2001/463), I regret to inform you that yet another Palestinian civilian has died as a result of the brutal actions of the occupying forces. (The name of the martyr is contained in the annex to the present letter.) This death raises the total number of Palestinian martyrs killed by the Israeli occupying forces since 28 September 2000 to 444 people. At the same time, the total number of Palestinian civilians injured, many severely and permanently, also continues to rise each day.
The international community should not remain idle while the Israeli occupying forces continue to wreak death, injury and destruction upon the Palestinian people under occupation. As long as such a situation continues, the wrong message is sent to the occupying Power. We call upon the international community and the Security Council to take the necessary action in this regard, in particular the provision of protection for Palestinian civilians.
I would be grateful if you would arrange to have the text of the present letter and its annex distributed as an official document of the tenth emergency special session of the General Assembly, under agenda item 5, and of the Security Council.
*Total number of Palestinian martyrs killed by Israeli occupying forces since 28 September 2000 = 444.