Minister for Foreign Affairs Condemns Israeli Air Strikes Against Gaza
The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr. Micheál Martin, T.D., has today strongly condemned the Israeli air strikes against Gaza which some reports estimate have resulted in up to 140 people being killed.
“I condemn in the strongest terms Israel’s action in launching air strikes in Gaza against Hamas targets which have resulted in widespread civilian fatalities.”
“These actions, far from ending the cycle of violence which has gripped both Gaza and southern Israel in recent weeks, are unfortunately only likely to escalate the situation and make the search for an effective ceasefire in Gaza even more difficult.”
“I want to issue a strong appeal to both sides, during this season of peace for many throughout the world, to step back from the precipice and desist from any further acts of violence. Israel must immediately cease its offensive operations in Gaza and allow unrestricted access for humanitarian agencies to assist the many victims of these appalling attacks.”
“I have consistently called for an end to all violence in and out of Gaza and repeat that call now. I strongly condemn the firing of rockets into Israeli territory. The people of southern Israel have as much entitlement to live in peace and security as do the population of Gaza.”
“Ireland will support all international efforts to de-escalate the situation in Gaza and help re-establish an effective ceasefire. In this regard, I would like to acknowledge the considerable efforts which the Government of Egypt has been making.”
28th December 2008