UNITED NATIONS - The Palestinian Authority on Wednesday urged the UN Security Council to take a stand on Israel's latest offensive in the Gaza Strip, which it said in a letter to the council amounted to "illegal criminal actions."
"This escalation, which continues at this moment, demands the attention of the international community, including the Security Council, with the aim of averting the further deterioration and destabilization of the situation on the ground and the fueling by Israel of yet another deadly cycle of violence and bloodshed," said Palestinian envoy Riyad Mansour.
In a letter to Indian UN Ambassador Hardeep Singh Puri, president of the 15-nation council this month, Mansour added that "a direct message must be sent to Israel to cease its military campaign against the Palestinian people under its occupation, including the cessation of extrajudicial killing."
Israel launched a major offensive against Palestinian militants in Gaza on Wednesday, killing the military commander of Hamas in an air strike and threatening an invasion of the enclave that the Islamist group vowed would "open the gates of hell."
The terrorist group Hamas, not the Palestinian Authority, controls Gaza.