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France 'gravely concerned' over Israel's plan to intensify Gaza fighting

France expressed "grave concern" Tuesday after Israel vowed to intensify and deepen operations in the Gaza Strip.

"France strongly reiterates its call for an immediate truce leading to a cease-fire," the Foreign Ministry said in a statement and condemned the "systematic bombing that has again left many civilian victims in recent days.”

"Israel must take concrete measures to protect the lives of the civilian population in Gaza," it added.

The ministry welcomed a recent UN Security Council resolution which called for "urgent steps" to immediately allow "safe, unhindered and expanded" humanitarian access to Gaza.

"In accordance with this, we call on Israel to facilitate the delivery of aid throughout the Gaza Strip and to take urgent measures to ensure full, safe and unhindered humanitarian access," it added.

Israel has launched a massive military campaign on the Gaza Strip since a cross-border attack by the Palestinian group Hamas on Oct. 7, killing at least 20,915 Palestinians, mostly women and children, and injuring 54,918 others, according to local health authorities.

The onslaught has left Gaza in ruins, with 60% of the enclave's infrastructure damaged or destroyed and nearly 2 million people displaced amid acute shortages of food, clean water and medicines.

Around 1,200 Israelis are believed to have been killed in the Hamas attack.


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