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Government "deeply concerned" at Gaza violence

The Swiss authorities have expressed "very deep concern" at the escalation of violence around the Gaza Strip and the consequences on the civilian population.

This content was published on February 29, 2008 - 19:43

In a statement released on Friday, Foreign Minister Micheline Calmy-Rey said Switzerland condemned repeated Palestinian rocket fire on Israel localities and was also worried by Israeli military reprisals.

The foreign ministry called for restraint and for both parties to abandon their "logic of reprisals". Switzerland especially deplored civilian victims, including children, that arose on both sides from the conflict.

The Swiss appealed for the Palestinians and Israelis to respect international human rights that forbid attacks on civilians and civil properties.

More than 30 Palestinians, including five children, have been killed in Israeli raids on Gaza since Wednesday. An Israeli civilian was victim to an upsurge in rocket fire on Israel, some of which reached the city of Ashkelon, 10km from Hamas-controlled Gaza.

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