UN chief asks Hamas to return stolen relief supplies

February 7th, 2009 - 5:27 am ICT by IANS  

New York, Feb 7 (DPA) UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has asked Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip to return a large quantity of humanitarian supplies stolen from the warehouse of the United Nations refugee centre.The UN said Friday that Hamas members broke into the warehouse of the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) for the second time in a week and took away blankets, tents and other goods intended for distribution to Gaza residents.

Ban has asked Hamas to “refrain from interference with the provision and distribution of humanitarian assistance in Gaza”.

“UNRWA has suspended the import of humanitarian goods into Gaza until the aid is returned,” the UN said.

The UN Security Council last month called on the warring parties in Gaza not to interfere with the distribution of food, fuel and medical supplies to the civilian population caught in the conflict.

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