David Cameron calls for end to conflict in Gaza - Middle East - World - The Independent

David Cameron calls for end to conflict in Gaza

 

David Cameron has urged Israel to “do everything possible” to end the crisis in Gaza as its military continued to trade missile strikes with Hamas amid fears of a new ground war.

In a phone call with Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu last night, he expressed sympathy for the continued "unacceptable" rocket attacks by militants which have reached Jerusalem for the first time.

A Downing Street spokeswoman said: "The Prime Minister expressed his sympathy for the unacceptable rocket attacks that Israel continued to suffer.

"He also expressed concern over the risk of the conflict escalating further and the danger of further civilian casualties on both sides.

"The Prime Minister said that the UK was putting pressure on both sides to de-escalate and urged Prime Minister Netanyahu to do everything possible to bring the conflict to an end."

Mr Cameron's call came amid intensified international diplomatic efforts to prevent the violence escalating into a full-scale conflict.

Israel launched around 300 airstrikes yesterday on targets in the Gaza strip, including the Hamas prime minister's HQ, a police compound and a building used by Hamas for media broadcasts.

Tens of thousands of reserves have been mobilised while large numbers of troops and tanks have been stationed along the border as it considers whether to launch a ground offensive into Gaza.

Israel said it still wants to hit hundreds of targets.

Palestinian militants meanwhile raised the stakes by aiming some of the latest salvo of 100 rockets at the cultural and commercial centre of Tel Aviv as well as the Israeli capital Jerusalem.

The Israeli military said the onslaught raised the total number to roughly 500 since this week's fighting began.

Health officials said 48 Palestinians have been killed and more than 400 civilians wounded since Wednesday. Three Israeli civilians were killed earlier in the week and more than 50 have been wounded.

Egypt stepped up efforts to broker a ceasefire - holding talks in Cairo with Hamas and key allies Qatar and Turkey while the Arab League also convened an emergency meeting.

Labour urged United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to step in and lead a "full-scale diplomatic initiative" in the region within the coming days.

Shadow foreign secretary Douglas Alexander said: "We urge the UN Secretary General to visit the region this week to begin talks with all parties, and with partners in the region.

"The only hope for peace and security for the citizens of the region will be through re-starting the stalled negotiations towards agreeing a two state solution."

Children's charity Unicef appealed for the "utmost restraint" from both sides to prevent youngsters being killed and injured.

Six Palestinian children aged between 10 months and 15 years have been reported killed and 60 injured in airstrikes on Gaza, it said, with another fatally wounded by a rocket that fell short.

And Israeli schools within a 25-mile radius were closed because of the "indiscriminate" rocket attacks.

"Both rocket attacks and airstrikes are putting children and their families at risk, leaving them exposed to physical harm and mental distress," it said.

"Unicef calls on all parties to do everything to exercise the utmost restraint and to protect the rights and well-being of all children."

Meanwhile protesters gathered near the Israeli embassy in London yesterday condemned the British Government's stance on the conflict.

Speakers took to a podium to condemn the Government after Foreign Secretary William Hague said the Hamas regime in Gaza bore "principal responsibility" for the escalation of violence.

PA

Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Robin Thicke's video for 'Blurred Lines' has been criticised for condoning rape
music
Voices
Yes supporters gather outside the Usher Hall, which is hosting a Night for Scotland in Edinburgh
voicesBen Judah: Is there a third option for England and Scotland that keeps everyone happy?
News
John Travolta is a qualified airline captain and employed the pilot with his company, Alto
people'I felt like that was the lowest I’d ever felt'
PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
News
peopleThe report and photo dedicated to the actress’s decolletage has, unsurprisingly, provoked anger
News
A plane flies close to the eruption of the Icelandic volcano
newsAnd yes, it's quite something
Sport
Tito Vilanova passed away aged just 45
footballThe club's former manager died in April, less than a year after he stood down
Arts and Entertainment
Benedict Cumberbatch
artAnd it's even for a good cause
Arts and Entertainment
While many films were released, few managed to match the success of James Bond blockbuster 'Skyfall'
filmsDaniel Craig is believed to be donning skies as 007 for the first time
Life and Style
techCriminals are targeting an e-reader security flaw
Life and Style
tech... and together they're worth at least £100 million
Arts and Entertainment
Matt Damon as Jason Bourne in The Bourne Ultimatum (2007)
filmMatt Damon in talks to return
Arts and Entertainment
Evil eye: Douglas Adams in 'mad genius' pose
booksNew biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Arts and Entertainment
Fringe show: 'Cilla', with Sheridan Smith in the title role and Aneurin Barnard as her future husband Bobby Willis
tvEllen E Jones on ITV's 'Cilla'
News
newsBut just how much does a 122-carat coloured diamond go for these days?
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Senior QA Engineer - Agile, SCRUM

£35000 - £50000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior QA Engineer (Agil...

Marketing Executive - West Midlands - £28,000

£26000 - £28000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Digital Marketing Executive (SEO, PP...

Retail Business Analyst

£40000 - £50000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our retail client ...

Senior C++ Developer

£400 - £450 Per Annum possibly more for the right candidate: Clearwater People...

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week