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UN Security Council Condemns Suicide Bombings in Istanbul - 2003-11-21


The U.N. Security Council has condemned the suicide bombings in Istanbul. The Council unanimously adopted a resolution urging all nations to cooperate in bringing terrorists to justice.

The Council condemned the bombings in the strongest terms, saying such terrorism threatens peace and security.

Before the vote, Turkish Ambassador Umit Pamir made an impassioned statement, noting that Turkey had earlier suffered through more than a decade of what he called "this terrible scourge".

"We've been calling in the most earnest manner for decisive international action and cooperation long before it struck around the world. Only recently we had been successful in reaching a broader understanding that we should not distinguish between the motivations, forms and the so-called causes of the terrorists," he said.

Speaking to reporters afterward, British Ambassador Emyr Jones Parry called it a bad day for democracy. He rejected suggestions that the recent spate of terrorist attacks in Turkey might be linked to the Turkish position on Iraq.

"No act of terrorism can be justified. I'm not going to look for linkages," he said.

Secretary-General Kofi Annan also personally condemned the attacks, and expressed sympathy to both Turkey and Britain. Speaking to reporters, Mr. Annan said those who carried out the attacks have no respect for human rights.

The Secretary-General also said he would keep U.N. staff out of neighboring Iraq as much as possible. Instead, staff will be sent in as necessary for short periods.

Mr. Annan's Special Envoy to Iraq, Sergio Vieira de Mello, was among 22 people killed in August in a suicide bomb attack on the U-N headquarters in Baghdad.

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