Secretary-General calls for end to Middle East violence

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On 19 November 2012, mourners attend the burial of Tasneem Al Nahel, 13, in Gaza City, occupied Palestinian territory. She was killed the previous day by shrapnel during an Israeli air strike. © UNICEF/NYHQ2012-1524/El Baba

Immediate steps are needed by all to avoid further escalation of hostilities in the Middle East, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told a press conference in Egypt on Tuesday.

The Secretary-General said he had come to the region to appeal personally for an end to the violence. He offered his help in ongoing efforts to achieve a ceasefire.

Mr. Ban said his primary concern was for the safety of Israeli and Palestinian civilians.

"I travelled the region under similar circumstances in early 2009. It is extremely painful for me to be back for the same reason and to see that the parties are no closer to ending the hostilities."

The Secretary-General said this new cycle of violence will make neither Palestinians nor Israelis more secure.

Charles Appel, United Nations.

Duration:   51″

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