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Source: United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for the OPT
7 December 2010




Statement by Maxwell Gaylard,
United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in the occupied Palestinian Territory
On the Closure of Sharek Youth Forum in the Gaza Strip

For immediate release

Jerusalem, 7 December 2010


The United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in the occupied Palestinian Territory, Maxwell Gaylard, today voiced his concern about the forced closure on 30 November by the local authorities in Gaza of all Gaza-based offices of the non-governmental organization Sharek Youth Forum.

“I am very concerned about the recent forced closing of Sharek Youth Forum in Gaza. Sharek is an important NGO partner of the United Nations in its work on behalf of children and the youth in Gaza”, Mr. Gaylard said.

Mr. Gaylard noted that “Sharek’s work forms part of the many important activities carried out by civil society organizations in the occupied Palestinian Territory promoting development and the protection of human rights.“

He stated that freedom of association and freedom of expression are fundamental rights protected by international law as well as the Palestinian Basic Law and expressed his hope that Sharek would be permitted to continue its work in Gaza without further delay or undue hindrance.

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Hayat Abu-Saleh
Office of the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process (UNSCO)
Public Information and Media Unit
Tel: 972-2-5687287
Mobile: 972-54-6631114
E-mail: abusaleh@un.org
www.unsco.org


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