May 24th, 2016 09:44 EST
UN Welcomes Resumption of Cement Deliveries into Gaza
The United Nations envoy for the peace process in the Middle East today welcomed the decision to resume the private import of cement into Gaza after nearly 45 days of suspension.
In a statement, Nickolay Mladenov, the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, said the import became possible because of efforts by both the Israeli and Palestinian authorities.
All sides need to ensure that cement deliveries reach their intended beneficiaries and are used solely for civilian purposes, " the envoy said.
Noting that humanitarian challenges in Gaza remain vast, " the envoy emphasized that all efforts should be made to resolve the housing, electricity and water crises.
It is critical for the security of both Palestinians and Israelis that Gaza remains calm and hope is restored to its people, " he said.
Mr. Mladenov also reiterated that the UN continues to call for the full lifting of all closures on Gaza, as envisioned in Security Council resolution 1860 (2009).
A permanent end to the suffering of the Palestinian people can only be achieved through reuniting Gaza and the West Bank under a single, legitimate and democratic Palestinian national authority and the realization of the two-state solution, " he stressed.
In April, the envoy said the UN was working closely with Palestinian and Israeli authorities following Israel`s suspension of cement deliveries to private companies in the Gaza Strip.
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