UN News Service: “Concerned at the situation facing civilians in strife-torn Gaza, Secretary-General Kofi Annan today issued a strong appeal for urgent action to alleviate their plight, calling on Israel to lift restrictions hampering the work of UN agencies there.

“As I have repeatedly stated, I am extremely concerned about the dangerous situation in the occupied Palestinian Territory,” Mr. Annan said in a statement released in Berlin, Germany.

“I am appealing for urgent action to alleviate the desperate humanitarian situation of the civilian population.”

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