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It has been 34 days since the General Assembly adopted resolution ES-10/16 on 17 November 2006, in which it requested me, in operative paragraph 3, to “establish a fact-finding mission on the attack that took place in Beit Hanoun on 8 November 2006 and to report thereon to the General Assembly within thirty days”.
On that basis, on 1 December, I designated Staffan de Mistura, Director of the United Nations System Staff College, to lead the fact-finding mission. He was to be supported by a small team, as well as by security and general support staff.
I instructed that the team should gather no later than 13 December 2006 and carry out its assignment in accordance with the terms of reference that I had approved.
The Secretariat accordingly informed, in detail, the Permanent Missions of Israel and Palestine on both 1 December and 5 December 2006 and requested that the Government of Israel and the Palestinian Authority, respectively, extend their cooperation to the fact-finding mission.
The Permanent Observer of Palestine communicated the agreement of the Palestinian Authority to extend its cooperation to the team.
However, as of today, the Government of Israel has not yet indicated whether it would extend the necessary cooperation to the mission.
For this reason I regret that I was unable to dispatch the fact-finding mission and report to the General Assembly about the events that occurred in Beit Hanoun on 8 November 2006, as mandated in resolution ES-10/16.
I would be grateful if you could bring the present letter to the attention of the members of the General Assembly.