UN envoy warns Palestine and Israel conflict heading towards "full-scale war” 1 month ago

UN envoy warns Palestine and Israel conflict heading towards "full-scale war”

Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney has said that the "violence must end".

United Nations (UN) envoy for Middle East Peace, Tor Wennesland, has warned that the conflict between Israel and Palestine could be heading towards "a full-scale war”.

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Palestinian militants and the Israeli army exchanged deadly fire overnight on Tuesday as the intense conflict continues to rage in Gaza.

The fighting was triggered by violence in Jerusalem, and at least 35 Palestinians in Gaza have been killed, mostly by airstrikes. At least five people in Israel have also been killed, while hundreds more have been wounded as a result of the conflict.

Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Coveney told the Israeli Ambassador at a meeting on Tuesday that the loss of life in Gaza was “completely unacceptable”.

Ambassador Ophir Kariv had been summoned to meet with the Minister after Israel unleashed new airstrikes on Gaza, killing a number of militants and civilians. The Israeli military said that 16 of the dead were militants.

Coveney tweeted that the cycle of violence must end, stating that the "killing of children in conflict is never acceptable".

"The killing of children in conflict is never acceptable. Israel should be condemned for targeting Gaza with such tragic consequences," he said.

"Firing rockets from Gaza must be condemned, but so too should such a brutal response. This violence must end."

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During the 45 minute meeting, he is understood to have told the ambassador that Israel has a duty to protect civilians and urged the Israeli authorities to urgently take action to de-escalate the situation.