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Annan's new Humanitarian Envoy begins mission

Annan's new Humanitarian Envoy begins mission

Secretary-General Kofi Annan's Personal Humanitarian Envoy landed in Tel Aviv today, kicking off a mission to assess the nature and scale of the humanitarian crisis in the region, according to a United Nations spokesman.

Catherine Bertini met in Jerusalem with Israel's Foreign Minister, Shimon Peres, and was also scheduled to meet with staff of the Office of the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, spokesman Fred Eckhard told reporters in New York.

During her eight-day visit, Ms. Bertini will also review humanitarian needs in the light of recent developments.

While in the region, Ms. Bertini is expected to meet with other senior Israeli officials, as well as senior officials from the Palestinian Authority, Mr. Eckhard said.