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China Calls On Israel To Achieve Cease-Fire In Gaza

16.04.2024 03:27

Beijing also expresses concern over tensions in Middle East following attacks by Israel and Iran.

China expressed concern Monday over the escalation of tensions in the Middle East following reciprocal attacks by Israel and Iran and called on Tel Aviv to achieve an immediate cease-fire in Gaza.

China's Special Representative for the Middle East Zhai Jun met with Israeli Ambassador to China Irit Ben-Abba Vitale, according to a statement from China's Foreign Ministry.

"The two sides had an exchange of views on the situation in the Middle East," it said.

Vitale introduced the situation of Iran's military strike against Israel over the weekend and expressed Israel's position and concerns on issues such as the conflict in Gaza.

Zhai elaborated on China's position regarding the Gaza conflict and said it is deeply concerned about the current escalation of regional tensions, noting that conflicts and bloodshed serve the interests of no one.

Iran on Saturday launched an airborne attack on Israel in retaliation for an April 1 airstrike on its diplomatic compound in the Syrian capital. It reportedly fired more than 300 drones and missiles, with almost all intercepted by the air defense systems of Israel and its allies – the US, France and the UK.

Israel has waged a deadly military offensive on the Gaza Strip since an Oct. 7 cross-border attack led by the Palestinian group Hamas in which some 1,200 Israelis were killed.

Nearly 33,800 Palestinians, mostly women and children, have since been killed in Gaza, and nearly 76,500 injured amid mass destruction and shortages of necessities.

The Israeli war has pushed 85% of Gaza's population into internal displacement amid a crippling blockade of most food, clean water and medicine, while 60% of the enclave's infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN.

Israel is accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice, which in January issued an interim ruling ordering it to ensure its forces do not commit acts of genocide and guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

*Writing by Gozde Bayar -

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