Singapore calls for de-escalation of rocket attacks in Israel and Gaza
The violence between Israel and Palestinian group Islamic Jihad is the most serious flare-up in the Gaza strip in more than a year.
SINGAPORE: Singapore has called on all parties involved in rocket attacks in Israel and Gaza to de-escalate the situation and cease attacks against civilians, said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) in a statement in the early hours of Monday (Aug 8).
The Foreign Affairs Ministry said Singapore is "deeply concerned" about the situation.
"We are saddened by the loss of innocent civilian lives. We call upon all parties to cease attacks against civilian targets, de-escalate the situation and work towards a durable ceasefire.
"All parties have a responsibility to protect the safety and security of civilians," the ministry said.
Israel and Palestinian militants in Gaza exchanged fire over the weekend in the worst bout of cross-border violence in more than a year.
The violence was triggered by Israel's arrest of a senior commander of the Islamic Jihad group, Bassam al-Saadi.
Following al-Saadi's arrest earlier in the week, Israel launched what it called pre-emptive strikes on Friday against an anticipated Islamic Jihad attack meant to avenge the arrest of al-Saadi.
In response, the Iranian-backed Islamic Jihad fired hundreds of rockets at Israel.
Israel's Friday strikes killed another top commander of the group, Taysir al-Jabari.
Islamic Jihad said the Israeli bombardment amounted to a "declaration of war", before it unleashed a flurry of more than 100 rockets towards Israel.
The flare-up has worried world leaders and prompted Egypt to mediate a ceasefire, which took effect at 11.30pm local time on Sunday.
Singapore's MFA urged Singaporeans in Israel to be on high alert and monitor the news closely.
"They should follow instructions from the local authorities and take the necessary precautions for their personal safety," MFA said.
Singaporeans in Israel should register themselves online.
Singaporeans requiring consular assistance can contact the Honorary Consulate-General of the Republic of Singapore in Tel Aviv at +9723 6476159/5475109 or the 24-hour MFA Duty Office at +65 6379 8800/8855.