UN chief urges restraint from Israel, Arab sides

May 16th, 2011 - 11:50 am ICT by IANS  

United Nations, May 16 (IANS) UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has called for restraint from all sides in Israel and Lebanon and urged them to refrain from “provocations”, Xinhua reported.

The UN chief’s call came following the deadly clashes along the Blue Line, a border demarcation between Lebanon and Israel in the occupied Golan Heights and in the occupied Palestinian territory.

About a dozen people were killed on the Syrian and Lebanese borders when Israeli forces opened fire at the demonstrators who climbed the fence to enter Israel, reports said.

Palestinians and Arabs demonstrated in the Palestinian territories and on Israel’s borders with Syria and Lebanon to mark the 63rd anniversary of the Nakba, or catastrophe, the term they use to refer to Israel’s creation in 1948 and the subsequent uprooting of Palestinians from their hometowns and villages.

“The secretary-general is deeply concerned that a significant number of people have been killed or injured. He calls on all concerned to show restraint and refrain from provocations so as to prevent escalation of tensions and ensure civilians are not killed or injured,” said a statement issued here by Ban’s spokesman.

“The secretary-general calls for calm throughout the region and utmost responsibility from all concerned,” the statement said.

“He reiterates the urgent need for a just, lasting and comprehensive Arab-Israeli peace, which ensures dignity and security for all, including an end to occupation, an end to conflict, and a just and agreed solution to the plight of Palestinian refugees.”

“The secretary-general calls for a renewed and sustained effort to resume Israeli-Palestinian negotiations and advance the broader goal of a comprehensive regional peace in the Middle East,” the statement said.

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