Arabs demand independent probe of Israeli raid

UNITED NATIONS — The U.N. Security Council held an emergency meeting Monday on Israel's deadly commando raid on ships taking humanitarian aid to the blockaded Gaza Strip, with the Palestinians and Arab nations demanding condemnation and an independent investigation.

The Palestinians and Arabs, backed by a number of council members including Turkey, also called for Israel to lift the blockade on Gaza, immediately release the ships and humanitarian activists, and allow them to deliver their goods.

Assistant Secretary-General Oscar Fernandez-Taranco said in his briefing to the U.N.'s most powerful body that the early morning bloodshed on Monday would have been avoided "if repeated calls on Israel to end the counterproductive and unacceptable blockade of Gaza had been heeded,"

Turkey's Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, whose country had been a longtime Muslim ally of Israel, called the raid "banditry and piracy" on the high seas and "murder conducted by a state." He urged the council to adopt a presidential statement circulated by Turkey.

Source: GmaNews


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