Last Update 18:43
Tuesday, 12 November 2019

German minister calls for truce before Mideast visit

German Foreign Minister is set to meet top Israeli officials on Monday and is expected to meet with Palestinian president Abbas on Tuesday in a bid to de-escalate the situation and create the conditions for a ceasefire

AFP , Monday 19 Nov 2012
Share/Bookmark
Views: 552
Share/Bookmark
Views: 552

German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle will travel to the Middle East on Monday for talks aimed at encouraging a ceasefire between Israel and Gaza militants, his spokesman said.

Westerwelle will meet his Israeli counterpart Avigdor Lieberman in Jerusalem late Monday before seeing Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, President Shimon Peres and Defence Minister Ehud Barak on Tuesday.

Later Tuesday he will visit Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas in Ramallah, the spokesman, Andreas Peschke, said.

"Everything must be done to bring about a de-escalation of the situation and create the conditions for a ceasefire," Peschke told a regular government news briefing.

He said Berlin was looking to Egypt and the Arab League in particular to help ease tensions and foster a truce.

Chancellor Angela Merkel's spokesman Steffen Seibert reiterated her "great concern" about the latest flare-up, which she conveyed in telephone talks at the weekend with Netanyahu and Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi.

"In this region, the Middle East, all bloodshed, every escalation of violence makes the situation more unstable and more dangerous," he said.

He stressed that Berlin blamed attacks on Israel by Gaza militants for sparking the spiral of violence.

"The constant barrage of rockets at Israel from the Gaza Strip is the cause of the latest escalation," Seibert said.

"The bombardment cannot be justified by anything including the difficult situation in the Gaza Strip. Israel has the duty and the right to protect itself from this bombardment with appropriate measures."

He added that Berlin sympathised with the "long-suffering" civilians on both sides of the conflict.

As fighting raged for a sixth day Monday, ceasefire efforts gathered steam, with senior Hamas officials in Cairo saying Egyptian-led talks on Sunday with Israel were "positive" but now focused on the need to guarantee the terms of any truce.

Meanwhile the Gaza death toll surpassed 90 in the worst violence in the region in four years. Three Israelis have been killed and more than 50 injured by rocket fire since Wednesday.

Short link:

 

Email
 
Name
 
Comment's
Title
 
Comment
Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.
Latest

© 2010 Ahram Online.