Russia asks Israel, Palestinians and Lebanon to defuse tensions

AFP , Ahram Online , Friday 7 Apr 2023

Russia on Friday called on Israel, the Palestinians, and Lebanon to end the "escalation" of violence, saying it was "deeply" concerned.

Sergey Lavrov
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov speaks as the Turkish Foreign Minister listens on during a joint press conference following talks in Ankara on April 7, 2023. AFP


"We call on the parties involved in the conflict to refrain from confrontational steps, to act in the interests of preventing further escalation, ending violence and restoring a sustainable ceasefire," the foreign ministry said.

Other international and regional key players called for de-escalation of the current situation.

Earlier on Friday, British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly appealed to "all parties" to de-escalate after Israel bombarded the Gaza Strip and Lebanon in retaliation for several dozen rockets fired from both territories.

"Now is the time for all parties across the region to de-escalate tensions," he said, condemning rocket attacks on Israel from Gaza and southern Lebanon.

However, Cleverly also criticized Israeli police for "violence" inside Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa mosque after officers clashed Wednesday with Palestinians inside Islam's third-holiest site.

Egypt on Friday also issued a statement, calling on the Israeli and Palestinian sides to exercise maximum self-restraint and heed efforts to de-escalate the situation in order to avoid bloodshed and protect lives.

"Egypt calls on all parties to exercise maximum self-restraint and cooperate with the efforts that are being carried out to de-escalate the situation in order to avoid bloodshed and protect lives, warning of the extreme dangers that could threaten the region if the current wave of violence continues," read the statement released by the Egyptian foreign ministry.

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