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Gaza - Report

Ban Ki-moon's car pelted with shoes and eggs in Gaza

Reuters/Mohammed Salem

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's car was pelted with shoes, eggs, sand and stones during a visit to Gaza on Thursday.

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About 50 protesters tried to block the convoy reaching the southern city of Khan Younis to visit a United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNWRA) housing project.

Dossier: Gaza 2009

The Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO) stated that it condemned such actions, calling them “alien to our traditions.”

Ban later joked about the “warm welcome” that he’d received and called on Israel to end its blockade of the Strip.

The UN chief drew attention to the number of international projects on hold due to Israel's closure of border crossings and ban on entry of building materials.

Local NGOs and businesspeople boycotted a planned meeting with the UN leader after his staff prohibited attendance by relatives of those currently incarcerated in Israel. An official statement reported that Ban “regrets this missed opportunity for an important exchange with Gazan civil society representatives”.

Many Gazans are angry at a perceived lack of attention by the UN to their plight, as well as the treatment of prisoners held in Israel, an issue that Ban said that he was “concerned” about.

Speaking in Ramallah on the West Bank on Wednesday, the UN leader stated that a Palestinian state was “long overdue”.

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