London, 23 Jumadil Akhir 1434/2 May 2013 (MINA) – The British Foreign Office minister for the Middle East, Alistair Burt on Wednesday (1/5) expressed his concern about the recent wave of violence in Palestine, especially in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

      “I am very concerned about recent developments in both the West Bank and Gaza,” he said in a statement issued by his office.“At this critical time for the two-state solution, we need dialogue, not violence,” he said.

      Burt was also commenting on an Israeli airstrike on Gaza City that killed one Palestinian and the killing of an Israeli settler in the West Bank by a Palestinian that caused widespread anti-Palestinian violence by Israeli settlers.

      “I am deeply concerned by breaches of the November ceasefire agreement in Gaza,” he said. The agreement ended eight days of Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip, Wafa reported as monitored by Mi’raj News Agency (MINA).

      “I condemn the recent rocket attacks. These attacks and subsequent airstrikes highlight the risks of a return to violence. I call on all parties to avoid further escalation, to adhere strictly to the terms of the ceasefire agreement and to continue to take advantage of Egyptian-brokered talks to deal with key issues including weapons smuggling and lifting restrictions on movement and access to relieve the suffering of the people of Gaza,” said the minister.

      Concerning about the clashes in West Bank recently, the minister condemned the destructive act of Israeli settlers to Palestinians and their properties. Those violence will make Palestinian felt disappointed to Israel and the peace seemed impossible there.

      “I also condemn the killing of an Israeli settler in the West Bank today, the first such death since 2011, and am deeply concerned by the recent spate of violent attacks by extremist settlers against Palestinians and Palestinian property. Such incidents have the potential to feed off each other and undermine efforts to seek peace and security.”

      Burt said that “Britain has been clear that 2013 is the vital year for peace in the Middle East. We will continue to work to ensure that the aspirations for peace of both the Israeli and Palestinian peoples are met.”

        Alistair James Hendrie Burt was born in 25 May 1955 in Bury, Lancashire, and was educated at the Bury Grammar School,  and St John’s College, Oxford where he was elected president of the Oxford Law Society there. He is a British Conservative Party politician. He was also the member of  parliament (MP) for North East Bedfordshire. Burt is currently Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. (T/P04/E1)

Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)

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