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Ban Ki-moon calls destruction in Gaza 'indescribable' and promises aid to rebuild

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Ban Ki-moon calls destruction in Gaza 'indescribable' and promises aid to rebuild


The UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has concluded his two-day trip to Israel and the Palestinian territories with a visit to Gaza to see the wrecked UN facilities there and conduct a general inspection of the damage.

He said rebuilding would need the mobilisation of the international community.

“I’m asking the leaders of both parties, Palestinians and Israelis, to resume the talks, so that they will be able to address the underlying root causes. Otherwise it’s a matter of time, unfortunately, the violence will continue,” Ban said.

Ban praised the work of the joint Hamas-Fatah technocrat government that met for the first time last week and said it would have his and the international communities’ support. There was also Israeli reaction to the British parliament’s voting to recognise the state of Palestine during his visit.

‘‘I think that the decision of the British Parliament to acknowledge the Palestinian state is a premature decision, it may be an Inevitable consequence, but it is not something that can be decided by a foreign government that is not involved in this conflict,” said one Jewish resident of Jerusalem.

Ban’s visit, during which he also condemned continued Israeli settlement building, was hoped to contribute to an early resumption of peace talks, but Israeli and Palestinian attitudes appear deeply entrenched after Israel’s 50-day bombing of Gaza this summer.

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