* News Release Issued by the International Secretariat of Amnesty International *

18 June 2002
MDE 15/097/2002

Amnesty International strongly condemns the bomb attack that killed at least 19 people and wounded 50 others, including children, during rush-hour in Jerusalem this morning. The explosion destroyed a bus, carrying school students and commuters from Gilo, at a bus stop near the Pat junction. Reportedly Hamas has claimed responsibility for the attack.

"The attack is shocking," Amnesty International said. "There is no justification for the targeting of civilians."

"Deliberately killing civilians violates fundamental principles of international law and we call on all Palestinian groups and individuals to cease such attacks immediately," the organization said.

"Israel and the Palestinian Authority have a responsibility to bring to justice people within their jurisdiction who ordered and facilitated the bombing," Amnesty International said. "In doing so they must act strictly in accordance with international humanitarian and human rights standards."

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