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Source: Secretary-General
18 October 2002



HIGHLIGHTS OF THE NOON BRIEFING

BY HUA JIANG
DEPUTY SPOKESMAN FOR THE SECRETARY-GENERAL OF THE UNITED NATIONS
UN HEADQUARTERS, NEW YORK

Friday, October 18, 2002
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  ANNAN DEPLORES LOSS OF PALESTINIAN LIFE IN GAZA ATTACK
    • In a statement released late Thursday afternoon, the Secretary-General deplored the attacks in Gaza yesterday by the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) in which at least six Palestinians were killed.
    • He was especially disturbed that the IDF fired tank rounds and heavy machine gun fire at two schools, one of which belonged to the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA).
    • In the statement, the Secretary-General once again called on the Government of Israel to halt such military actions in heavily populated areas and live up to its obligations under international humanitarian law to take special care to protect civilians, as well as to ensure the security of United Nations installations.
    • He also reiterated his appeal to both sides to stop all acts of violence and provocation, as called for by the Security Council.
    • Today, UNRWA sent an assessment team to Rafah to look at the damage caused by the fighting.¬†Initial reports suggest that 20 refugee shelters, which are home to 39 families, were damaged to such an extent that they are now uninhabitable.

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