Statement of Concern about the situation in Gaza by the Primates and Moderators of the Anglican Communion at the Primates Meeting in Alexandria.
We, the Primates and Moderators of the Anglican Communion, meeting in Alexandria, Egypt, are aware of the great tragedy and human suffering in this region, especially in Gaza at this time.
We are distressed by the injury and loss of life in Gaza and southern Israel which has resulted from military actions undertaken both by the Israeli Defence Force and the forces of Hamas. We earnestly call for an immediate cessation of all armed aggression. We deplore the fact that a way was not found to continue the ceasefire beyond six months and that violence has since escalated on both sides.
We mourn all loss of life. We give thanks for the selfless work of those ministering in the hospitals and clinics, and caring for the traumatized, the injured and the dying. We especially note Al Ahli Arab Hospital, Gaza, an institution of the Diocese of Jerusalem. We call upon our Churches and international organizations to help in the rebuilding of Gaza and to respond to the enormous humanitarian need. We also call upon our governments to use their best efforts to secure an immediate and lasting ceasefire as an essential precondition to negotiations leading to a lasting peace.
We recognize the important mediatory role of President Mubarak and the Government of Egypt in securing an initial ceasefire and pray for all those, including Senator George Mitchell, engaged in seeking a lasting solution to an immensely complex and sensitive problem. We endorse the rights of the peoples of both Israel and Palestine to live in peace and security, free from fear, and with dignity and hope. We pledge ourselves to use whatever influence we may have to promote such a goal for Israelis and Palestinians alike.
We wish publicly to thank all those who have made sacrifices for the many who are suffering and we commit ourselves to stand alongside the Diocese of Jerusalem and the other Heads of the Churches in the region to alleviate the long-term suffering of all the communities of the region.
Finally, we invite all the Churches of the Communion to join us in praying for those traumatized, injured and bereaved, and pledge ourselves to support all efforts for reconciliation whether between individuals or communities.
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