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cal04 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 03:14 AM
Original message
Olmert regretful over U.N. workers' deaths
Edited on Wed Jul-26-06 03:38 AM by cal04
(snip)
Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert on Wednesday expressed "deep regret" over the killings and said the peacekeepers were killed mistakenly. He spoke on the phone with Annan, expressing dismay over Annan's accusation and promising a thorough investigation, according to Olmert's office.

The bomb made a direct hit on the building and shelter of the observer post in the town of Khiam near the eastern end of the border with Israel, said Milos Struger, spokesman for the U.N. peacekeeping force in Lebanon known as UNIFIL.

Annan said two observers were killed with two more feared dead. Later, a U.N. official confirmed that a third body had been recovered. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to publicly discuss the issue.

One of the dead was identified as Chinese U.N. observer Du Zhaoyu, China's official Xinhua News Agency reported. The Chinese Foreign Ministry said Israel's ambassador to Beijing was summoned Wednesday morning and asked to convey China's request that Israel fully investigate the incident and issue an apology to the victim's relatives.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060726/ap_on_re_mi_ea/mide...
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14034540/
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Ghost Dog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 04:03 AM
Response to Original message
1. Annan:
"I am shocked and deeply distressed by the apparently deliberate targeting by Israeli Defense Forces of a U.N. Observer post in southern Lebanon," Annan said in the statement.

Annan said in his statement that the post had been there for a long time and was marked clearly, and was hit despite assurances from Olmert that U.N. positions would not be attacked.

"I call on the government of Israel to conduct a full investigation into this very disturbing incident and demand that any further attack on U.N. positions and personnel must stop," Annan said in the statement.
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Laughing Mirror Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 04:26 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. Israel's U.N. Ambassador Dan Gillerman:
"I am shocked and deeply distressed by the hasty statement of the secretary-general, insinuating that Israel has deliberately targeted the U.N. post....It could be the IDF....It could be Hezbollah."

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Ghost Dog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 05:31 AM
Response to Reply #2
5. And according to this source, Annan also said:
(DU thread in Greatest: http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph... )

Mr Annan described the strike as a "co-ordinated artillery and aerial attack on a long established and clearly marked UN post." He said it took place "despite personal assurances given to me by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert that UN positions would be spared Israeli fire."

"Furthermore, General Alain Pelligrini, the UN Force Commander in south Lebanon, had been in repeated contact with Israeli officers throughout the day on Tuesday, stressing the need to protect that particular UN position from attack."

- emphasis added. So, this was a specific battle zone?
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w4rma Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 06:11 AM
Response to Reply #2
11. Do you know what Israel did while the UN was trying to rescue these folks?
Edited on Wed Jul-26-06 06:13 AM by w4rma
They kept bombing and fighting in the area and refused to give the rescuers any help.

What should that tell you about the sincerity of Olbert's "regret" (not apology)?
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Ghost Dog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 06:36 AM
Response to Reply #11
14. Aha. Do you have a good link for that? n/t
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Cooley Hurd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 07:26 AM
Response to Reply #14
16. Link and quote:
http://edition.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/meast/07/26/mideast.m...

<snip>
UNIFIL sent a rescue-and-medical team to the city of Khiyam, where the post was located. Attacks in the vicinity continued as rescuers tried to reach those killed or injured, UNIFIL said.

UNIFIL said there had been at least 14 incidents of fire close to the post since Tuesday afternoon.

</snip>

Why couldn't the IDF hold fire for a few hrs to give UNFIL time to collect their casualties? What harm in it? :shrug:

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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 04:32 AM
Response to Original message
3. That does NOT comfort the family members of the UN outpost murdered. eom
Edited on Wed Jul-26-06 04:32 AM by ShortnFiery
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Behind the Aegis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 04:34 AM
Response to Reply #3
4. So he should have said nothing?!
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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 05:40 AM
Response to Reply #3
6. "Regretful" is a far cry from an "heartfelt apology" - UN Outpost Murders
:thumbsdown:
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Behind the Aegis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 06:00 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. like it would matter?
Please!
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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 06:04 AM
Response to Reply #7
9. Well, on that point, I agree with you.
IMO there must be a more compassionate word that "regretful" when referring to the death of innocents. :shrug:
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Behind the Aegis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 06:07 AM
Response to Reply #9
10. It wouldn't matter...
...he could have fallen on the ground, ripped his shirt, and it wouldn't be good enough.
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magellan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 06:03 AM
Response to Original message
8. "killed mistakenly"
Killed with impunity is more like it.

Annan is a man who's careful about the words he chooses. He would never say something was "deliberate" unless he was certain. But Israel's investigation will back Olmert's contention it was a mistake, and it'll be the their word against the UN's...and years from now both sides of the debate will have an answer they can throw in the other's face, while nothing will have been done to punish the criminals.

The families of the dead peacekeepers deserve better.
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sueragingroz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 06:18 AM
Response to Reply #8
12. Don't forget
A Chinese national died.

This won't "just go away"
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magellan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 06:29 AM
Response to Reply #12
13. Wouldn't that be ironic?
I'm no fan of the Chinese gov't, but if anyone can apply a little righteous indignation that counts in this situation, they can.

Since I haven't "met" you before, howdy! And welcome to DU. :hi:
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sueragingroz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 05:01 PM
Response to Reply #13
19. Thanks magellan!
For the nice welcome.

Yes. It would be something for China to have something to say about this....
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LostinVA Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 07:00 AM
Response to Reply #8
15. They shelled them FOURTEEN different times over the day
And then attacked again while the observers were being rescued. This wasn't a one-time :"oops!" moment. It was a long-established post, and the photos I saw had loads of vehicles stamped "UN," and dudes in blue berets, etc. running around.

HOGWASH.
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Crunchy Frog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 07:30 AM
Response to Original message
17. Nice words to use to express the fact
that you take no responsibility whatsoever. You "regret" deaths that were caused by impersonal forces beyond your control, like tsunamis or earthquakes. Even if this was a mistake (which I question, given the details of what happened) Israel is still responsible for it, and a genuine apology is in order.

I hope that China will at least hold their balls to the fire over this.
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mogster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-26-06 08:25 AM
Response to Original message
18. Guardian pic
Edited on Wed Jul-26-06 08:26 AM by mogster

UN personnel carry the body of one of the UN military observers who was killed by an Israeli bombardment of the southern Lebanese town of Khiyam. Photograph: Lotfallah Daher/AP

http://www.guardian.co.uk/israel/Story/0,,1830397,00.ht...

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