SECRETARY-GENERAL SERIOUSLY CONCERNED BY ATTEMPTED
EXTRA-JUDICIAL KILLING BY ISRAELI DEFENCE FORCES
NEW YORK, 10 June (UN Headquarters) -- The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for Secretary-General Kofi Annan:
The Secretary-General expresses his serious concern over today’s attempted extra-judicial killing by the Israel Defence Forces of a senior Hamas political leader in Gaza. He reiterates his consistent opposition to such actions. Today’s action is likely to complicate even further the efforts by the Palestinian Prime Minister to halt violence and terrorism by Palestinian groups.
The Secretary-General condemns the killing in today’s attack of Palestinian civilians, including a mother and her three-year-old daughter. He calls again on the Government of Israel to desist from the disproportionate use of force, especially in densely populated areas.
The Secretary-General believes that Israelis and Palestinians face a stark choice. Either they follow the Road Map that leads to the establishment of two States, Israel and Palestine, living side-by-side in peace and security; or they take the low road that spirals down into an endless cycle of violence, counter-violence and revenge. Events of the past few days illustrate in graphic form the consequences of the latter course. The Secretary-General, therefore, urges the leaders on both sides to show the wisdom, courage and restraint needed to commit themselves to implementing the Road Map, as part of the search for a just, lasting and comprehensive settlement in the Middle East.
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