Georgian FM Condemns “Rocket Attacks Against Civilians” in Israel

Georgian Foreign Minister David Zalkaliani on May 11 said Tbilisi “strongly condemns violence and rocket attacks against civilians” in Israel, which “undermine peace and stability in the wider region.”

Noting that the Georgian government is closely following the recent developments, the chief Georgian diplomat said de-escalation of tensions in the region has no alternative.

At least 35 people in Gaza Strip and 5 in Israel died in the past few days in the most intense flare-up of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict since 2014. Hostilities escalated on May 11, with Israel carrying out multiple airstrikes in Gaza and Hamas militants reportedly launching hundreds of rockets towards Tel-Aviv and central Israel.

Tensions are mounting since May 7-8 overnight when Israeli police and Palestinian youth clashed at Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa mosque amid growing fears of pending evictions of numerous Palestinian families from their homes located on lands claimed by Israeli settlers in East Jerusalem’s Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood. Israel sees Jerusalem, including its eastern part captured in the 1967 war as its capital – claim not recognized by most of the international community, – while Palestinians want East Jerusalem as the future capital of the Palestinian state they seek in Gaza and the West Bank.

Georgia recognized the statehood of Palestine in 1992, and voted in support of the UNGA resolution upgrading Palestine to non-member observer state status in the United Nations in 2012. The country also supports the peaceful resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian issue on the basis of a two-state solution. In December 2017, Georgia skipped the vote at the Emergency Special Session of the United Nations General Assembly, which voted on the draft resolution condemning the move of the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem.

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