Carter Center Calls for High-Level Diplomatic Intervention to Halt Violence in Israel and Palestine

ATLANTA (May 14, 2021) — The Carter Center calls on Israel to halt the bombardment of Gaza, a densely populated area. Residents there have no access to bomb shelters and have no way to escape the indiscriminate shelling.

Armed groups in Gaza, too, must stop firing rockets against population centers in Israel.

These acts can be considered war crimes.

The Carter Center urges the international community to engage at a high diplomatic level and negotiate a ceasefire. Including Egypt and Jordan in the negotiations would add to the credibility of such a multilateral effort. The Biden Administration bears special responsibility for bringing about a ceasefire, given its close relationship and leverage with Israel.

This week’s developments marked the most serious escalation between armed groups in Gaza and Israeli forces since the 2014 hostilities and could spiral into unpredictable levels of violence if measures are not taken immediately to stem the violence.

Already, the conflict has claimed the lives of over 100 civilians, including children, and injured hundreds more. Nearly all of the victims lived in Gaza. In Israel, violence between Jewish and Palestinian citizens has engulfed cities with mixed populations. In the West Bank, frustrated Palestinian youth have taken to the streets to protest the bombardment of Gaza. In response, Israeli forces have killed 10 Palestinians and injured over 150.

The Israeli security forces’ attack on Al-Aqsa Mosque during the closing days of Ramadan precipitated this escalation and should be investigated. The immediate root causes of this violence must be addressed. Most urgently, the removal of Palestinians from East Jerusalem through provocative evictions must stop. It is clear that without lifting the 15-year siege of Gaza, any cessation of hostilities will be short-lived and the cycle of violence will be repeated.


Contact: In Atlanta, Soyia Ellison,
In Ramallah, Qais Asád,