NEW YORK – The recent escalation in rocket attacks, culminating in the wounding of a young girl, should be met “with utmost seriousness” and a response from the UN, Ambassador to the UN Meron Reuben wrote in a letter to Secretary-General Ban Kimoon and the Security Council on Tuesday.

“The incidents of the past several days are part of an escalation of terrorist attacks emanating from Gaza that target Israeli civilians, towns and military personnel,” the letter read.

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“Israel holds the de facto authority in the Gaza Strip completely responsible for all of these incidents, which are carried out in clear violation of international law. In response to such attacks, Israel has exercised and will continue to exercise its right to selfdefense.

“With the intention of preventing the continued escalation of conflict, the security council, the secretary-general and the international community must send a clear and resolute message that these attacks are unacceptable,” Reuben’s letter continued.

Reuben also requested that the Security Council give attention to arms-smuggling into Gaza, “which continues to fuel violence and instability in our region – in violation of numerous Security Council resolutions, including Resolution 1860.”

Robert Serry, the UN special coordinator for the Middle East peace process, on Wednesday condemned the rocket and mortar fire from Gaza.

“These attacks are in clear violation of international humanitarian law and endanger civilians in Israel,” Serry said, adding that Israel has “a right to self-defense consistent with international humanitarian law.

“I urge Israel to exercise maximum restraint and take every precaution to ensure that its forces do not endanger civilians in Gaza, who all too often bear the brunt of escalations in violence,” Serry said.

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