Statement by the Press Secretary / Director-General for Press and Public Relations, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, on the Intensified Violence between the Israelis and the Palestinians

May 21, 2001

  1. Japan is deeply concerned with the fact that violence between the Israelis and the Palestinians has been intensified in the last few days. Japan expresses its deepest sympathy to the bereaved families and those who were injured in the recent violence. The suicide bombing in Netanya on May 18 was an indiscriminate killing of innocent civilians and Japan deplores such an act of terrorism. Japan considers the attacks by the Israeli Defense Forces on the same day using their jet fighters were acts of excessive use of force, which would further aggravate the situation.

  2. Japan strongly urges all the parties concerned to break the vicious circle of violence and to return to the negotiation as soon as possible. In this context, Japan supports the initiatives taken by Egypt and Jordan as well as the Mitchell Commission as providing important bases for dialogues between the parties for settling the situation.

  3. Japan will continue to extend any possible assistance to the parties in their peace efforts.

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