As statements come from countries’ top officials, President Bush urges Hamas to cease attacks but offers to Israel to avoid civilian casualties.
The recent attacks from Hamas have sparked numerous casualties as 200 people are reported to be killed and some 750 injured. Of these reports, included are women and children.
Fox News reporting on behalf of the AP states:
Some of the Israeli missiles struck in densely populated areas as children were leaving school, and women rushed into the streets frantically looking for their children.
With these types of casualties, it has sparked a resounding worldwide response.
The BBC reports the following quotes:
Spokesman for Ban Ki-Moon, UN Secretary General
“[He] appeals for an immediate halt to all violence [and reiterates] previous calls for humanitarian supplies to be allowed into Gaza to aid the distressed civilian population.”
Gordon Johndroe, White House Spokesman
“Hamas’ continued rocket attacks into Israel must cease if the violence is to stop. Hamas must end its terrorist activities if it wishes to play a role in the future of the Palestinian people.
The United States urges Israel to avoid civilian casualties as it targets Hamas in Gaza.”
Spokesman for Javier Solana, EU Foreign Policy Chief
“We are very concerned at the events in Gaza. We call for an immediate ceasefire and urge everybody to exert maximum restraint.”
Russian Foreign Ministry statement
“Moscow considers it necessary to stop large-scale military action against Gaza [and] at the same time, we call on the Hamas leadership to stop shelling Israeli territory.”
As The Times reports how Hamas is committed to the destruction of Israel, Israel “sought to Isolate Hamas by squeezing Gaza economically.”
This coming as Bloomberg reports:
Hamas leaders said the cease-fire failed because Israel refused to remove restrictions on the flow of food, medical supplies and other goods through Gaza border crossings.
Israel has offered its own agenda saying, “it will not speak to [Hamas] unless it recognizes the Jewish state, ceases all attacks and abides by past agreements signed by Israel and the Palestinian Authority.”