China urges Israel to stop military operation in Rafah 'as soon as possible'

AFP , Tuesday 13 Feb 2024

China urged Israel on Tuesday to stop its military operation in the Gazan city of Rafah "as soon as possible", warning of a "serious humanitarian disaster" there if fighting did not stop.

Palestinians stand inside a house damaged during a raid by Israeli security forces looking for wanted militants in the village of Sir, south of Jenin, in the occupied West Bank on February 13, 2024. AFP


"China follows closely the developments in the Rafah area, opposes and condemns actions that harm civilians and violate international law," a foreign ministry spokesperson said in a statement.

Beijing urged Israel to "stop its military operation as soon as possible, (and) make every effort to avoid innocent civilian casualties, to prevent a more serious humanitarian disaster in the Rafah area."

China has supported proposed resolutions for a permanent ceasefire in the United Nations Security Council since shortly after the start of the war in October.

Israel is facing growing international pressure to agree to a ceasefire with Hamas as it prepares for an incursion into Rafah, the southern Gaza border city where more than a million displaced Palestinians are trapped.

Israel conducted a predawn raid in Rafah on Monday that freed two hostages and killed around 100 people, after rejecting Hamas's terms for a truce last week.

Cairo will be hosting a new round of talks to reach a ceasefire in the Israeli war on Gaza on Tuesday.

The talks will be attended by Mossad director David Barnea, CIA chief William Burns, Qatari Prime Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, and Egyptian intelligence officials.

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