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Gaza Strip: ICRC delegate abducted in Khan Younis

07-11-2002 News Release 02/62

Geneva (ICRC) – A delegate of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) was abducted by four young men at midday today in front of the ICRC office in Khan Younis, in the Gaza Strip.

When he was seized, Nicolai Panke, a German national who has been working in Gaza since March, was distributing relief items to families whose houses have been destroyed or severely damaged.

The ICRC has spoken several times with Mr Panke and has received assurances that he has not been harmed. The organization is maintaining high-level contacts with the Palestinian authorities with a view to facilitating his safe and speedy release.

Targeting humanitarian workers is totally unacceptable. The ICRC demands Mr Panke's immediate release.