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7 July 2010
Daily Press Briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General
The following is a near-verbatim transcript of today’s noon briefing by Farhan Haq, Associate Spokesperson for the Secretary-General.
The Secretary-General will meet at 3 p.m. this afternoon with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and we’ll try to get a readout.
Yesterday afternoon, we issued a statement in which the Secretary-General welcomed the further measures announced by the Government of Israel in increasing the scope and quantity of materials entering the Gaza Strip from Israel, and also noted the agreement to facilitate the immediate start of construction of 12 United Nations education and health facilities. The Secretary-General has long called for a significant shift in strategy towards meeting the great needs of Gaza’s population. Further steps must now follow to meet those needs and to allow the United Nations to accelerate and expand its efforts. That full
**Questions and Answers
Question: Thank you, Farhan. Does the Secretary-General intend to speak to the Prime Minister Netanyahu about the incident of the flotilla, and will he press on him to accept the international investigation commission?
Associate Spokesperson: As far as that goes, as you know, with all of his interlocutors, the Secretary-General has continued to discuss the proposal that he has made for an international investigation into the 31 May incident, and he expects to do so again. We’ll try and provide a full readout, however, once the meeting has taken place.
Question: A follow-up on that, please, and I have another question on Lebanon. But you keep on telling us that the SG’s proposal remains on the table. Can you explain to us what that means, that it is on the table? I mean, it’s been on the table for a while…
Associate Spokesperson: Indeed it has, and he continues to discuss with various interlocutors, trying to get their positive response to his proposals. He certainly believes that this is the best way forward in resolving this issue, so he is continuing with those efforts. At this stage we continue to await a positive response from all the parties.
Question: When is it going to be moved from the table to the table next door?
Associate Spokesperson: That’s an interesting metaphor.
Question: What’s the next step, after being on the table for a while?
Associate Spokesperson: I think the next step depends upon acceptance by the parties.