SA calls for immediate ceasefire, peace in Israel-Palestine conflict

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South Africa expresses its grave concern over the recent devastating escalation in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Pretoria has joined the international community in demanding an immediate end to the violence and the initiation of a credible peace process.

“This process must align with numerous United Nations resolutions calling for a two-state solution and a just, comprehensive peace between Israel and Palestine.”

The statement says, “Violence, assassinations, detentions, forced displacement, illegal settlements and the ongoing siege of Gaza cannot help resolve the conflict.

“Urgent attention must be given to resolving the final status issues such as borders, the status of Jerusalem, the release of political prisoners, and the right of return.”

The United Nations Secretary-General has condemned in the strongest terms the attack by Hamas against Israeli towns near the Gaza Strip and central Israel, including the firing of thousands of rockets toward Israeli population centres.

The attacks have so far claimed numerous Israeli civilian lives and injured many hundreds. The Secretary-General says he is appalled by reports that civilians have been attacked and abducted from their own homes.

Ravina Shamdasani is the Spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk.

‘Mighty vengeance’

Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed “mighty vengeance” against Hamas after the Palestinian militant movement launched a surprise attack on Saturday, killing more than 150 Israelis and taking numerous captives.

In a brief video address, he said Hamas would be held responsible for the well-being of the captives and said Israel would settle the score with anyone who harmed them. -Additional reporting by Reuters