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UK statement on UN Inquiry into Gaza flotilla and today's clashes on Israeli-Lebanon border

The Foreign Office has issued a statement following the UN Secretary-General's announcement of a panel of inquiry into the interception of the Gaza flotilla on 31 May, and today's clashes on the Israel-Lebanon border.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Speaking earlier today, a Foreign Office spokesperson said:

“We welcome the UN Secretary-General’s establishment of a panel of inquiry into the interception of the Gaza flotilla on 31 May, and both Israel and Turkey’s commitment to participate. The panel has an important role to play in investigating and resolving the dispute over the flotilla and preventing future recurrence. It is also vital that the existing national investigations proceed swiftly, transparently and rigorously to ensure full accountability.

We are very concerned by the recent rocket fire on towns in southern Israel, continuing violence in Gaza and today’s violence on the Israeli-Lebanon border, all of which underline the importance, for the region as a whole, of all parties committing to a lasting peace. We condemn the violence today that led to deaths on both sides and call on Israel and Lebanon to act with restraint.

Against this backdrop a move to substantial talks by the Israelis and Palestinians is essential; we encourage both parties to engage on the core issues as quickly as possible, and refrain from action that damages the process, in particular acts of violence, settlement construction or other provocations.”

Published 4 August 2010