UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Tor Wennesland, tells the UN Security Council that he is “deeply disturbed” by rising violence between Israel and the Palestinians and calls for calm ahead of the overlap of Ramadan, Passover and Easter.
“This should be a period for safe and peaceful religious reflection and celebration for all,” says Wennesland during a monthly Security Council meeting on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. “I call on all leaders to engage to this end and refrain from provocative actions and messages at this sensitive time.”
Wennesland says that “unfortunately, daily violence increased significantly during” the past few months. He says he is “deeply disturbed by the intensifying cycle of violence that threatens to plunge Palestinians and Israelis deeper into deadly crisis.”
He also laments that IDF operations in the West Bank “and subsequent clashes have led to a staggering number of Palestinians killed and injured.” Wennesland adds that he is “deeply troubled by continued Israeli settlement expansion,” referencing the authorization of nine illegal outposts and the advancement of around 7,000 new settlement housing units, as well as a meeting scheduled to deliberate building in the E1 corridor near Jerusalem.