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Following rocket fire from Gaza, UN urges restraint and protection of civilians

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Kindergarten in Kibbutz Nahal Oz, in Israel's southern district, with secure play area and reinforced roof to protect children from rocket attacks. © IRIN/Erica Silverman

21 March 2013 – The United Nations today urged restraint by all parties following rocket fire from Gaze into civilian areas in southern Israel.

“We condemn all rocket fire and call for it to stop,” said a UN spokesperson. “We urge restraint and we remind all sides of their obligations under international humanitarian law to protect civilians.”

According to media reports, one of the rockets exploded in the courtyard of a house in the border town of Sderot early in the morning while the other landed in an open field. No injuries were reported.

The ceasefire agreement brokered by Egypt in November, which brought an end to eight days of violence in Gaza and Israel, was also breached last month when a rocket landed in Ashkelon, reportedly causing damage but no injuries.

“Efforts must continue to fully implement the understanding for a ceasefire agreed in Cairo on 21 November 2012. The terms of agreement should be strictly abided by all,” the spokesperson said.