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Thursday, January 29, 2009

UN: Israel failed in duties as occupier

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Wed, 28 Jan 2009 08:17:02 GMT | PressTV

A relative of Palestinian farmer Anwar al-Beram cries during his funeral in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip. Israeli soldiers killed the farmer after a bomb blast on the Israeli side of the Gaza border.
UN humanitarian chief John Holmes confirms that Israel has closed the Gaza Strip border crossings in violation of international laws.

Israel briefly opened its border with Gaza on Tuesday. The crossing, however, was sealed the same day after an Israeli soldier was killed by a bomb blast at a Gaza crossing. No group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

Israel responded almost immediately by killing a farmer at the crossing and launching a new round of attacks on the coastal area.

Palestinian witnesses said Israeli helicopters also hovered in the air firing machine gun bursts and an Israeli jet sounded a loud sonic boom over Gaza City.

"Israel has a particular responsibility as the occupying power in this context, because of its control of Gaza's borders with Israel, to respect the relevant provisions of international humanitarian law," the UN emergency relief coordinator told the Security Council on Wednesday.

Briefing the 15-member council on his recent trip to Gaza, Holmes urged immediate action from the Israeli side.

"It is therefore critical that new steps are taken immediately by the Israeli authorities to move to the sustained re-opening of crossing points," he said.

Over 1300 Palestinians -- the native population of the land -- were killed and 5450 others were injured during Israel's 23-day-long Operation Cast Lead on Gaza.

At least 460 of those killed were children.

A total of 13 people, consisting of 3 civilians and 10 soldiers, where killed in the conflict, according to Tel Aviv.

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