UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Tuesday voiced grave concern over the spiraling escalation in Israel and Palestine, including the latest escalation in Gaza, which added to the heightened tensions and violence in occupied East Jerusalem, said his spokesman.
Guterres is deeply saddened to learn of increasingly large numbers of casualties, including children, from Israeli airstrikes in Gaza, and of Israeli fatalities from rockets launched from Gaza, said Stephane Dujarric, the spokesman, in a statement.
"Israeli security forces must exercise maximum restraint and calibrate their use of force. The indiscriminate launching of rockets and mortars towards Israeli population centres is unacceptable," added Dujarric. The secretary-general's thoughts are with the families of the victims, said the statement.
The United Nations is working with all relevant parties to de-escalate the situation urgently, said the statement.
Tension spread from East Jerusalem to the Gaza Strip after Palestinian groups in Gaza vowed to retaliate for the raids on Al-Aqsa, and potential resident removals in Sheikh Jarrah.
As of late Tuesday, Israeli attacks on Gaza have killed 28 Palestinians, including nine children, and injured 152 others. Two Israelis have been killed in rocket attacks.