Indiscriminate shelling of civilian areas in Gaza and Israel unacceptable

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The UN Human Rights Office(OHCHR) says it was unacceptable that civilians continue to bear the greatest burden of tension between the Israeli government and Palestinians.

UN Human rights chief Navi Pillay says the protection of civilian lives was an obligation for all states under international law.

The High Commissioner says she was concerned over the escalation of tension and hostilities in the region this week, and urged both sides to pull back from an increasingly dangerous confrontation.

Rupert Colville is the spokesperson for the UN Human Rights Office.

"The High Commissioner joins the Secretary-General, and many others in urging both sides to take serious steps to avoid further escalation and respect their obligations under international humanitarian law to ensure the protection of civilians. The High Commissioner has repeatedly and unequivocally condemned the indiscriminate firing of rockets from the Gaza Strip into southern Israel, and is deeply concerned both by the recent major upsurge in the number of rocket attacks, and that they are now being aimed at a major city such as Tel Aviv. She is also extremely concerned by the sharp increase in aerial attacks by Israeli forces on the heavily populated Gaza Strip in the past two days and urges both sides to pull back from an increasingly dangerous confrontation."

The High Commissioner is urging  all sides involved to comply strictly with international human rights law and international humanitarian law.

Patrick Maigua United Nations Radio Geneva

Duration 1.29

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January 2018
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