27 June 2006

Secretary-General Shocked, Saddened at Murder of Russian Diplomats in Iraq

NEW YORK, 26 June (UN Headquarters) -- The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan:

The Secretary-General was shocked and saddened to learn of the gruesome murder of four Russian diplomats who were taken hostage in Iraq earlier this month.  He condemns in the strongest possible terms these heinous acts, which no cause can justify.  He urges the Iraqi authorities to do everything possible to bring those responsible to justice, and reiterates his call for the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages in Iraq.

The Secretary-General expresses his deepest condolences to the bereaved families and to the Government and people of the Russian Federation.

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