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In Gaza on Friday again thousands of Palestinians have demonstrated, sometimes violently, near the fence. At least six were killed and hundreds injured from Israeli live fire, some while attempting to cross into Israel. We once again call on all to act with utmost restraint to avoid further loss of life.
We expect Israel respects the principle of necessity and proportionality in its use of force. And we expect that Hamas and other extremist groups in Gaza do not exploit the demonstrations for other ends and ensure they remain strictly non-violent.
In the occupied West Bank on Saturday a Palestinian woman was killed by stone throwing. Three Israeli civilians have also been killed in recent days and weeks. All such incidents need to be investigated and perpetrators brought to justice.
The cycle of violence leads only to more violence and deprives entire generations from the legitimate aspiration to live in peace and free to build their own future. Only a political solution can put an end to the violence. In this context, the European Union strongly appreciates and fully supports the efforts of the United Nation’s Special Coordinator who has been working closely together with all parties and with the international community to get a political process going again in Gaza.
The EU already provides the assistance to the population in the Strip and is ready to contribute to this process with all the diplomatic, technical and financial means at its disposal.