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Israel compensates UN for Gaza damage

Jan. 22, 2010 10:15 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 23, 2010 5:46 P.M.)
Bethlehem - Ma'an - Israel paid the United Nations 10.5 million US dollars for damage to the world body’s properties in the Gaza Strip during last year’s assault on the coastal area, the UN News Centre reported on Friday.

The payment fell short of the 11.4 million that the UN requested following an investigation in Gaza that started in August.

"With this payment, the United Nations has agreed that the financial issues relating to those incidents referred to in the terms of reference of the Board of Inquiry are concluded," said a spokesman for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

Damage was done to at least four UN schools, and the central warehouses where they UN Relief and Works Agency keeps food stocks for the almost one million registered refugees in the Strip was bombed and sustained serious damage from a fire.

"The Secretary-General would like to record the cooperative approach that the Government of Israel has shown in the course of the discussions that led to this settlement," the spokesman added, speaking at a news conference in New York.

The incidents were investigated by the UN Headquarters Board of Inquiry early last year, after which Israel and the UN held discussions over compensation, the UN News Centre reported.
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