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Canada calling for ceasefire as Israel-Palestine fighting escalates

Click to play video: 'Bombardment between Israel and Hamas shows no signs of relenting' Bombardment between Israel and Hamas shows no signs of relenting
WATCH: Bombardment between Israel and Hamas shows no signs of relenting – May 17, 2021

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canada is calling for a ceasefire in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to stop the violence that has been escalating in the region.

He says the violence needs to stop and Canada will work with the international community to de-escalate the situation “so that there is no more loss of civilian life.”

Read more: Israel strikes Gaza tunnels as U.S. signals it won’t pressure for cease-fire

At a news conference in Ottawa today, the prime minister says that his heart goes out to Israelis and Palestinians as they live through the violence surrounding them.

Hundreds have died in recent days after Hamas, the militant group that rules the Gaza Strip, launched rockets and Israel unleashed airstrikes.

Click to play video: 'Palestinians in Israel stage protests as airstrikes continue in Gaza' Palestinians in Israel stage protests as airstrikes continue in Gaza
Palestinians in Israel stage protests as airstrikes continue in Gaza – May 18, 2021

Israel has vowed to press on with its operations, and the United States signalled it would not pressure the two sides for a ceasefire even as President Joe Biden said he supported one.

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The escalation was triggered by days of clashes at the Al-Aqsa Mosque, the third holiest site in Islam, which is built on a hilltop site sacred to Jews in the holy city.

Read more: Explainer: Are Israel, Hamas committing war crimes in Gaza?

That followed tensions fuelled by the planned eviction of dozens of Palestinians from the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood of East Jerusalem where Israeli settlers have waged a lengthy legal battle to take over properties.

Gaza’s Health Ministry says the Israeli airstrikes have killed at least 213 Palestinians, including 61 children, and wounded about 1,500 Palestinians.

Israel says 12 people have died, including two children, and at least 300 have been wounded.

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