Spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: Rupert Colville
Date: 16 November 2012
The High Commissioner Navi Pillay is following the unfolding situation in Gaza and southern Israel with considerable alarm. She is appalled that once again civilians are losing their lives, including three Israeli citizens killed in their apartment by one of the hundreds of rockets fired over the past week as well as several Palestinian children, including a baby, and also a pregnant woman and some other civilians killed in Gaza.
The High Commissioner joins the Secretary-General, and many others in urging both sides to take serious steps to avoid further escalation and respect their obligations under international humanitarian law to ensure the protection of civilians.
The High Commissioner has repeatedly and unequivocally condemned the indiscriminate firing of rockets from the Gaza Strip into southern Israel, and is deeply concerned both by the recent major upsurge in the number of rocket attacks, and that they are now being aimed at a major city such as Tel Aviv. She is also extremely concerned by the sharp increase in aerial attacks by Israeli forces on the heavily populated Gaza Strip in the past two days and urges both sides to pull back from an increasingly dangerous confrontation.
The High Commissioner urges all sides involved to comply strictly with international human rights law and international humanitarian law.