2 May 2003

Secretary-General Says Israeli Incursions against Palestinians Contradict International Efforts to Restart Peace Process

NEW YORK, 1 May (UN Headquarters) -- The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for Secretary-General Kofi Annan:

The Secretary-General is deeply disturbed by Israeli military incursions today in Gaza City and the Rafah refugee camp, in which at least eight Palestinians were killed and many others injured. He stresses that such actions, including the reported house demolitions, are contrary to international humanitarian law. He believes that they contradict the international community's efforts to restart the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, following yesterday's presentation of the "road map" to the parties.

The Secretary-General remains convinced that there is no military solution to this conflict and calls on Israel to work with Prime Minister Abu Mazen to establish effective cooperation ensuring security for both Israelis and Palestinians. He again urges the parties to embrace the road map and to work for its early implementation.

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