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Indonesian president calls for end to Gaza conflict

Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has called for an immediate end to the conflict and cycle of violence in Gaza. Yudhoyono also approved US$1 million in humanitarian assistance for Palestine.

JAKARTA: Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has called for an immediate end to the conflict and cycle of violence in Gaza. Yudhoyono also approved US$1 million in humanitarian assistance for Palestine.

In a statement, Yudhoyono said Indonesia is deeply concerned about the rapidly worsening situation in Gaza. He again urged the United Nations to push for an end to the cycle of violence in Gaza, and the immediate distribution of humanitarian assistance.

He said: “Israel's ground military operation can only add to the suffering of Palestine, the Palestinian people and must be brought to an immediate end."

Yudhoyono had spoken to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon by phone, and plans to speak with US President Barack Obama about the Israeli-Palestine conflict.

Indonesian Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa said: "We have also spoken with the Palestinian foreign minister to ask how Indonesia can further help Palestine, including channeling through US$1 million of humanitarian assistance that has been approved by the president."

President Yudhoyono also urged Indonesian airlines to avoid flight paths over the conflict areas of Gaza and Israel, and the Russian-Ukraine border, close to where a Malaysia Airlines plane had crashed in eastern Ukraine with 298 on board.  

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