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News of Gaza ceasefire welcomed

Hon Murray McCully
Minister of Foreign Affairs

1 August 2014

News of Gaza ceasefire welcomed

Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully has welcomed the Joint Statement by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and United States Secretary of State John Kerry that there will be a 72 hour humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza.

“New Zealanders are rightly shocked at the events unfolding in Gaza and we call on both sides to implement an immediate ceasefire.

“We have condemned the recent shelling of UN buildings, including schools, which are being used by civilians as safe shelter and we are dismayed by the appalling and unacceptable civilian death toll in this conflict.

“Both sides have fallen short of their obligations under international law to protect civilians. We have repeatedly called for an end to rocket attacks from Gaza and for an end to Israel’s military operations in the territory.

“We also welcome the announcement that Israeli and Palestinian delegations are heading to Cairo for negotiations with the Government of Egypt. We hope these talks can bring about a more durable ceasefire and allow both sides to work through issues of concern,” Mr McCully says.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade continues to advise against all travel to Gaza and urges New Zealanders currently in Gaza to depart as soon as it is safe to do so.

All New Zealanders travelling overseas are strongly encouraged to register their details with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade via the safe travel website: www.safetravel.govt.nz

ENDS

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