|UN Humanitarian Envoy tours Palestinian relief projects
14 August – United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s Personal Humanitarian Envoy travelled today to the West Bank, where she held discussions with the Palestinian leadership and gained a first-hand look at a number of relief projects in the area.
Catherine Bertini spent the morning in Ramallah, where she met with Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat, a UN spokesperson said in New York. During their nearly hour-long talks, which were also attended by Palestinian Minister for Local Government Saeb Erakat, President Arafat outlined the humanitarian problems faced by Palestinians as a result of the current situation.
While in Ramallah, Ms. Bertini toured humanitarian projects run by the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) in the Amari refugee camp. She spoke with humanitarian workers as well the beneficiaries of various programmes, including a summer camp and health centre, spokesperson Hua Jiang told a news briefing.
In the afternoon, Ms. Bertini continued her meetings with other Palestinians, including Hanan Ashrawi, a member of the Palestinian Legislative Council, Dr. Mustapha Barghouti, the head of the Palestinian Medical Relief Organization, as well as a number of local business people. She was also briefed on the economic situation by Maher Masri, the Palestinian Minister of Economy and Trade.