UN rights chief to visit Israel, territories

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour said Wednesday she will visit Israel and the Palestinian territories next week to examine the current situation for civilians. Arbour said she would conduct field visits on her six-day mission starting Nov. 19, and meet with authorities on both sides as well as with human rights groups. "My primary concern will be to emphasize the obligation to protect civilians during armed confrontation, and the entitlement of all, Palestinians and Israelis alike, to live free from fear, free from want, free from harm," she said at the opening of Wednesday's special session of the UN Human Rights Council, the third to focus on alleged Israeli human rights atrocities since the body's inception in June.