United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan today condemned in the strongest possible terms the Palestinian suicide bombing in Jerusalem, which killed 20 Israelis and injured dozens more, calling it a totally reprehensible terrorist attack, urging Palestinian leaders to arrest the instigators and exhorting Israel to show restraint.
"The Secretary-General has made clear repeatedly that terrorist attacks are totally reprehensible," a statement issued by Mr. Annan's spokesman in New York said. "He urges Palestinian Prime Minister (Mahmoud) Abbas to take decisive action to arrest the instigators of this attack and prevent such attacks from happening again.
"The Secretary-General calls on the Government of Israel to act with restraint in the face of this provocation, and not contribute to a renewed cycle of violence and revenge," the statement added, reiterating that security for both Israelis and Palestinians can best be achieved by the political process of conflict resolution called for in the Road Map.
The Road Map peace plan, sponsored by the so-called diplomatic Quartet of the UN, United States, European Union and Russian Federation, calls for Israel and the Palestinians to take a series of parallel and reciprocal steps culminating in the achievement of two states living side by side in peace by 2005.