Foreign Secretary William Hague has expressed his concern at the escalating violence in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories over the past week.
Speaking today the Foreign Secretary said:
“I am extremely concerned at the escalating violence in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories over the past week. We have seen a surge in rockets and mortars launched at Israeli civilians from the Gaza strip. This is abhorrent. Three people have been injured, many more are living in fear. Six Palestinian civilians, including four children, have been killed as a result of Israeli actions in the Gaza strip. We have urged the Israeli government to ensure everything is done to avoid further civilian casualties while calling for a complete end to attacks on Israel.
“And we have seen the terrible sight - which we hoped belonged to the past - of a bomb at a bus station in Jerusalem. A British woman was killed and more than 30 injured. I condemn this attack in the strongest terms and call for those responsible to be held to account. Elsewhere, we have seen Israeli settlers opening fire on a Palestinian funeral procession, wounding two mourners. Also, another Palestinian was stabbed in an unprovoked attack.
“We condemn the extremists who are instigating this violence and who are deliberately attempting to wreck the chances of peace. We call on all sides to do all that they can to prevent further loss of innocent life, to bring the perpetrators to justice and to reduce current tensions.”