(NEW YORK) — The United Nations Security Council called for a ceasefire Saturday in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict that has resulted in rising casualties in the Gaza Strip.
As bombs continue to fall in Israel and Gaza, Security Council President Eugene Richard urged for a comprehensive peace agreement based on a two-state solution between the groups.
“The Security Council members expressed serious concern regarding the crisis related to Gaza and the protection and welfare of civilians on both sides.,” Richard said.
Officials also emphasized “respect for international humanitarian law.”
The unanimous statement by the 15-member council called on Israel and Hamas to stop the rocket lobbies and resume peace talks.
“We hope that the Israeli side would abide by it,” said Riyad Mansour, Permanent Observer of Palestine to the UN. “We were ready and we worked very hard in order to see the Security Council acting and stopping this carnage earlier.”
Israel is targeting civilians, according to Mansour, with 78 percent of those killed including children, women, and the elderly.
Amid the attacks, Americans are being evacuated from Gaza. Around 300 American citizens expressed interest with the Jerusalem consulate to leave the area, an official told ABC News. Hundreds of Palestinians with foreign passports will also start the process of evacuating Sunday.
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David Mark, CNN Newswire
Steve Almasy, CNN
James Griffiths and Shen Lu
Mohammed Tawfeeq, Joe Sterling and Susanna Capelouto, CNN