World Bulletin / News Desk
In a statement, African Union Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat said the “disproportionate use of force by the Israeli army” resulted in the killing of over 50 Palestinian demonstrators, while many more were wounded.
“The relocation of the United States Embassy to Jerusalem can only further heighten tensions in the region and complicate the search for a lasting solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,” Mahamat said.
The pan African body reiterated its solidarity with the Palestinian people in “their legitimate quest for an independent and sovereign state with East Jerusalem as its capital”.
Mahamat called on the international community to search for a lasting two-state solution.
Meanwhile, Australia urged Israel to be “proportionate in its response and refrain from excessive use of force”; it also expressed its deep regret and sadness over the loss of life and injury during the protests in Gaza.
“We recognize that Israel has legitimate security concerns and needs to protect its population, and we call on Israel to be proportionate in its response and refrain from excessive use of force,” Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop said in a written statement.
Bishop also urged Palestinian protesters to “refrain from violence and attempting to enter into Israeli territory during the March of Return”.
“The Australian government is committed to a future where Israel and a Palestinian state exist side-by-side in peace and security, within internationally recognized borders,” she added.