Statement by Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dermot Ahern T.D., on current crisis in the Middle East
As attention focuses on the deliberations of the UN Security Council in New York, I urge all parties to act now with determination and urgency.
The continuing incidence of civilian casualties confirms the priority we have placed from the start on an immediate cessation of hostilities. I repeat that call now, for an immediate cessation in order to prevent further loss of civilian life.
As long as military actions on either side continue, civilian casualties will continue to occur and events on the ground may derail the efforts to restore peace.
If all parties make genuine efforts and are prepared to compromise, the outstanding concerns raised by the parties to the conflict can be reflected in the Resolution being drafted by the Security Council.
It is important to stress that at this critical moment any military escalation can only serve to deepen the current crisis.
I am following the situation in Lebanon closely, and am being kept fully informed of developments on the ground and at the United Nations.
9th August 2006