United Nations Secretary General arrives in West Bank, talks to Fayyad
United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon arrived in Ramallah Friday morning for talks with Palestinian caretaker Prime Minister Salam Fayyad and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. Talking first to Fayyad, Ban is scheduled to have lunch with Abbas before heading to Ankara in the afternoon for the next leg of his Middle East trip, reported dpa.
Ban, meeting with Israeli leaders in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem Thursday after talking to the Egyptians in Cairo a day earlier, said "the elements are in place" for a truce to be reached "reasonably soon."
The secretary general conveyed his "strong protest and outrage" over Israel's shelling of a UN compound in Gaza City, where three shells struck as he was holding his talks in Israel and set ablaze a warehouse storing humanitarian aid meant for Palestinian refugees. Three people were injured in the shelling.
Israeli caretaker Prime Minister Ehud Olmert expressed "regret," but said militants had fired at Israeli ground troops from near the compound.