UN Flotilla Committee 311.
(photo credit: Associated Press)
NEW YORK – UN Secretary- General Ban Ki-moon received his first
report from his
appointed four-person Panel of Inquiry into the May 31 Gaza flotilla
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The report, which was not made public, was largely procedural
in nature and was based on the two meetings the panel held in August and
September of this year, an official from the secretary-general’s office
The report explains “the Panel’s understanding of the tasks at hand
and the working methods it has unanimously adopted in order to carry out its
mandate,” the official said, adding that proceedings “have been conducted in a
positive and collegial manner.”
Members of the panel agreed that they
will receive and review reports of national investigations into the May 31
incident from both Israel and Turkey. The panel also agreed to make requests to
state-designated points of contact in Israel or Turkey, in the event that they
require more information or clarification.
If information is required
from other states besides Israel and Turkey, the panel determined that
information will be sought through diplomatic channels.
implicitly address previously expressed concerns that the panel would be
assume a subpoena power or would attempt to challenge national
into the incident.
“The Panel agreed that in the light of the information
so gathered, it would examine and identify the facts, circumstances and
of the incident and make findings and recommendations for the prevention
similar incidents in the future,” a statement issued by the secretary-
office read, adding that Ban “was heartened that the Panel unanimously
it had the means available to it to respond to the high international
that has been expressed concerning the flotilla incident.”