Israel faced heavy criticism in an emergency session of the United Nations Security Council on Monday in response to its deadly attack on an aid flotilla trying to breach the Gaza blockade, but attempts to issue a formal statement stalled after the United States rejected the strong condemnation sought by Turkey.
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said Monday he was "shocked" by a deadly Israeli raid on a Gaza-bound aid flotilla and demanded a full investigation.
"I am shocked by reports of killings and injuries of people on boats carrying supplies for Gaza," the UN chief said at a press conference following the opening in Uganda of a key conference on the International Criminal Court.
An Australian journalist and photographer onboard aid boats headed for the Gaza Strip have not been heard from since at least 10 people were reportedly killed during a clash with Israeli commandos.
Israel's defence force says at least 10 people were killed when commandos stormed a convoy of six ships carrying aid to Gaza.
After the international community agreed to put pressure on Israel to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), the US president reacts by condemning the move.
In a statement issued on Friday, US President Barack Obama said the agreement reached at the 2010 NPT review conference singled out Israel with regard to a nuclear weapons-free Middle East.
As Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu heads to Washington in a much-feted effort to restore damaged ties with the United States, new tensions in East Jerusalem threaten to rekindle a diplomatic row over Jewish building beyond the Green Line in the city.
On Saturday lawyers served eviction notices to two Palestinian families in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, a focus of clashes between Arab residents and settlers.
But Sasha Polakow-Suransky, the American academic who uncovered the documents while researching a book on the military and political relationship between the two countries, said the denials were disingenuous, because the minutes of meetings Peres held with the then South African defence minister, PW Botha, show that the apartheid government believed an explicit offer to provide nuclear warheads had been made.
This is the cover page and two other pages from the secret military agreement between Israel and South Africa, signed by both Shimon Peres and Botha. Note on page two there is a clause that says the very existence of the agreement is secret. Both men have signed the agreement on page three.
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