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Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hong Lei's Remarks on the Continuation of Conflicts Between Palestine and Israel

Q: Hamas has turned down the ceasefire proposal recently made by Egypt. Conflicts between Palestine and Israel are still going on. The Israeli side has launched a Gaza ground campaign, targeting tunnels used by Hamas to get into Israel. What is China's comment on that?

A: The Chinese side follows closely how things are going between Palestine and Israel and has expounded on its position on many occasions. We are deeply worried about and saddened by the escalation of conflicts and the ensuing heavy casualties. We welcome and applaud the ceasefire proposal made by Egypt and urge once again relevant parties of Israel and Palestine to give priority to the security of the two peoples as well as regional peace and stability, keep calm and exercise maximum restraint. What is pressing now is to cooperate actively with each other, answer the international community's call for a ceasefire and respond to its mediation efforts, realize an immediate ceasefire and avoid any action that may ratchet up tension, such as ground military operation and rocket launch.

Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Ming has recently met with envoys and representatives of Israel, Palestine, Arab countries such as Egypt and the Arab League, offering good offices to the situation between Palestine and Israel. Ambassador Wu Sike, China's Special Envoy on the Middle East Issue is visiting Israel, Palestine and relevant countries in the region, making broad contact with all parties to promote peace talks. The Chinese side will continue to make unremitting efforts for an immediate realization of ceasefire between Palestine and Israel and maintenance of regional security and stability.

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