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UN Security Council slams Israeli raid on flotilla

UN Security Council members have condemned Israel's attack on a humanitarian flotilla for the Palestinians and urged Israel to end its blockade on the Gaza Strip.

world Updated: Jun 01, 2010 15:54 IST

UN Security Council members have condemned Israel's attack on a humanitarian flotilla for the Palestinians and urged Israel to end its blockade on the Gaza Strip.

In individual statements ahead of a possible official UN Security Council reaction, the 15 council members on Monday issued remarks, almost all condemning the Israeli assault in which at least nine people were killed.

"It is clearer than ever that Israel's restrictions on access to Gaza must be lifted in line with Security Council Resolution 1860. The current closure is unacceptable and counterproductive," British Ambassador Mark Lyall Grant said ahead of the emergency session called after the deadly attack.

France, Russia and China -- also veto-wielding permanent council members -- also called for the blockade to be lifted and for an independent inquiry.

The United States, Israel's traditional ally which often uses its veto power to aid the Jewish state -- did not request specifically that Israel end its blockade on the Gaza Strip. But it hinted that the measure at least should be eased.

US deputy permanent representative Alejandro Wolff said Washington was "deeply disturbed by recent violence and regrets tragic loss of life and injuries. We are working to ascertain the facts.

"We expect a credible and transparent investigation and strongly urge the Israeli government to investigate the incident fully," Wolff said.