'Violence erodes hopes of meaningful peace in Middle East’

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Hillary Clinton
Washington, Mar 24: Strongly condemning the terror attack in Jerusalem and the killing of civilians in Gaza, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said that violence erodes hope of a meaningful peace between Israel and Palestine.

“We stress the importance of calm and we urge all concerned to do everything in their power to prevent further violence and civilian casualties among both Israelis and Palestinians," Clinton said during a joint press availability with her Moroccan counterpart Taieb Fassi Fihri.

“Violence only erodes hope for a lasting and meaningful peace and the final realization of two states for two peoples," she said.

“This morning, I was shocked and deeply saddened to learn of the bombing in Jerusalem that took at least one life and injured innocent civilians. Terrorism and the targeting of civilians are never justified," Clinton said.

“Israel, like all nations, of course, has to respond when this occurs. US is committed to Israel"s security and we strongly condemn this violence and extend our deepest sympathies to all those affected," she said.

Clinton also strongly condemned recent rocket attacks from Gaza against innocent Israeli civilians and hold fully responsible the militants perpetrating these attacks.

“I join President Obama in extending our sincere condolences to the friends and families of the Palestinian civilians killed in Gaza yesterday and appreciate that Israel has expressed regret," she said.

Earlier in the day, US President Barack Obama called for maintaining calm in the region.

“We stress the importance of calm and urge all parties to do everything in their power to prevent further violence and civilian casualties,"Obama said in a statement.

“I condemn in the strongest possible terms the bombing in Jerusalem today, as well as the rockets and mortars fired from Gaza in recent days. Together with the American people, I offer my deepest condolences for those injured or killed," said the US President.

Asserting that there is never any possible justification for terrorism, Obama called on the groups responsible to end these attacks at once and underscored that Israel, like all nations, has a right to self-defense.

“We also express our deepest condolences for the deaths of Palestinian civilians in Gaza yesterday.

We stress the importance of calm and urge all parties to do everything in their power to prevent further violence and civilian casualties," Obama said.

PTI

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