Lavrov Pinpoints ‘Roots of Tensions’ in Palestine, Israel

Head of Hamas Political Bureau Ismail Haniyeh (R), with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov (L) and top Hamas official Mousa Abu Marzouk. (Photo: via Hamas website)

The escalation of violence in the Middle East should provide an impetus for implementing a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has said.

Speaking to journalists on Thursday, the top diplomat reiterated a call for a swift resolution of the crisis. After that, hopefully “everyone would take responsibility for implementing the decisions of the UN Security Council on the creation of a Palestinian state under the principles that the UN has approved.”

Lavrov spoke to the media in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, after meeting his counterparts from the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), a regional intergovernmental organization composed of former parts of the Soviet Union.

“All of us had the same opinion… that this confrontation must be stopped immediately, that parties should respect international humanitarian law, prevent any terrorist actions and indiscriminate use of force,” Lavrov said.

He stressed that civilians from both sides were suffering en masse and that the failure to create a viable Palestinian state was the root of continued tensions in the region.

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Israel suffered the worst breach of its national security in five decades when the Palestinian militant group Hamas launched a surprise incursion from Gaza last Saturday, killings hundreds of troops and civilians and capturing dozens of hostages.

The Israeli government has besieged Gaza in retaliation with the stated goal of “obliterating” the organization. Israeli forces have been bombarding the area, leveling entire buildings. They have also cut delivery of basic supplies, such as water, fuel and electricity, to the two million people trapped in Gaza.

Moscow has argued that the crisis is a result of a US effort to “monopolize” the Middle East peace process and Washington’s failure to genuinely push for the creation of a Palestinian state.

The US has pledged its full support to Israel in its war on Hamas. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Wednesday that Israel could be trusted to “take all of the precautions that it can,” when asked by the media whether the US pressured Israel to exercise restraint. He is meeting senior Israeli officials on Thursday.

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(The Palestine Chronicle)

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