Deputy FM Ayalon: "Kassam rockets do not cease to fall, and the residents continue to suffer. We would like to see a clear message from the international community protesting the suffering of these people."
(Communicated by the Deputy Foreign Minister’s Bureau)
Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon met today (Sunday, 21 March 2010) in Jerusalem with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. The two discussed international economic and humanitarian efforts, with an emphasis on the humanitarian aid Israel extends in times of international crises. Colonel Yitzhak Kraus, commander of the Israeli field hospital deployed in Haiti, and Haim Divon, Deputy Director General of MASHAV, Israel’s Agency for International Development Cooperation, were also present.
At the start of the meeting, Deputy FM Ayalon stated that "This meeting is unique, as we will discuss issues beyond the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. We wish to present to the United Nations Israel’s involvement in humanitarian situations around the world. We have a moral obligation to increase Israel’s involvement in international situations where humanitarian aid is required. Israel did all in its power to support the rescue forces in Haiti, and now would like to continue to contribute from its experience. Israel decided to respond favorably to the UN request to send a police delegation to help protect public order in Haiti. Israel will also establish a youth village for 700 Haitian youths.
"When we join the OECD, we will be able to increase our humanitarian budget. We want to offer our assistance and contribute to the region and the world in the fields of desertification, hi-tech, public health, education and agriculture." The Deputy FM also reviewed MASHAV’s international activities.
Referring to the situation in the south, Deputy FM Ayalon stated that "I have just returned from a visit to towns in the south. The Kassam rockets do not cease to fall, and the residents continue to suffer. We would like to see a clear message from the international community opposing the suffering of these people."
Addressing the UN Secretary General, Ayalon stated that "I hope that in your next visit you will visit Sderot and the other settlements around the Gaza Strip, as you did in your previous visit."
Secretary General Ban Ki-moon thanked Deputy FM Ayalon, and stated that he appreciates Israel’s international humanitarian efforts.