US for de-escalation of violence in Gaza, welcomes call for ceasefire

Last Updated: Tuesday, July 15, 2014 - 06:50

Washington: Welcoming the Egyptian call for a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, the US has said it remains committed to work with regional partners to find a resolution to de-escalate violence in the war-torn Gaza.

"We are seeking a de-escalation in that violence," White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said yesterday, adding that top US officials have been in touch with leaders of Israel.

Meanwhile, the US welcomed Egypt`s call for a ceasefire, hoping this will lead to the restoration of calm as soon as possible.

"The Secretary of State John Kerry has been deeply engaged in conversations with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Egyptian government officials and Palestine President Mahmoud Abbas throughout this difficult period, and the United States remains committed to working with them and our regional partners to find a resolution to this dangerous and volatile situation," said State Department Spokesperson, Jen Psaki.
The Obama Administration said the US was very concerned about those Palestinian civilians who were in harm`s way.

"That`s why we`ve been urging Israeli political leaders and Palestinian leaders to do everything necessary to try to safeguard the safety and well-being of civilians on both sides of the border.

"That`s why we have said that nobody wants to see a ground invasion because that would put even more civilians at risk," Earnest said.

Earnest said US had encouraged leaders on both sides to at least demonstrate some concern for the safety and well-being of innocent civilians.
"We have seen Hamas repeatedly in the last couple of weeks fire rockets that are aimed squarely at civilians, attempting to inflict terrible damage," he said.

"We have articulated our concern about the casualties that have been sustained on both sides over the last several weeks. That`s why we`re encouraging both sides to exhibit as much restraint as possible," he said.

Calling Hamas to end rocket fire, Earnest said the US will continue to encourage Israelis to exhibit some concern for the lives of civilians as well.

"We certainly would like to see a cease-fire along the lines of the cease-fire that both sides agreed to and was facilitated by the US about a year and a half ago. That would restore at least some measure of peace in the area," he said.

PTI

First Published: Tuesday, July 15, 2014 - 06:50

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