China’s President Xi Jinping on Tuesday called for an “immediate” cease-fire in Gaza, also pushing efforts to convene an international peace conference on Palestine towards an early solution to the conflict.
“The parties to the conflict must end hostilities and achieve a cease-fire immediately, stop all violence and attacks against civilians, release civilians held captive, and act to prevent loss of more lives and spare people from more miseries,” Xi told a special session of the BRICS countries – Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa – to discuss the situation in the besieged Palestinian enclave.
Addressing the BRICS country leaders, Xi said: “Given the current circumstances, it is very timely and important that BRICS countries meet and speak up for justice and peace on the Palestinian-Israeli issue.”
Xi said China backs convening of an international peace conference “that is more authoritative to build international consensus for peace and work toward an early solution to the question of Palestine that is comprehensive, just and sustainable.”
“The right of the Palestinian people to statehood, their right to existence, and their right of return have long been ignored. This is the root cause of the Palestinian-Israeli situation,” he told the virtual BRICS summit, hosted by South Africa.
“The only viable way to break the cycle of Palestinian-Israeli conflict lies in the two-state solution. There can be no sustainable peace and security in the Middle East without a just solution to the question of Palestine,” said the Chinese leader.
He said humanitarian corridors to Gaza “must be kept secure and unimpeded, and more humanitarian assistance should be provided to the population in Gaza.”
“The collective punishment of people in Gaza in the form of forced transfer or water, electricity and fuel deprivation must stop,” said Xi.
Since Israel started bombing Gaza after a surprise Oct. 7 attack by the Palestinian group Hamas, at least 13,000 Palestinians have been killed, including over 9,000 women and children, and more than 30,000 others have been injured, according to the latest figures by Palestinian authorities.
Thousands of buildings, including hospitals, mosques, and churches, have also been damaged or destroyed in Israel’s relentless air and ground attacks on the besieged enclave.
An Israeli blockade has also cut Gaza off from fuel, electricity, and water supplies and reduced aid deliveries to a small trickle.
The Israeli death toll is around 1,200, according to official figures.
Source : aa