UK foreign minister Cleverly calls for restraint from Israeli military

LONDON (Reuters) – British Foreign Secretary James Cleverly said on Saturday he had spoken to the Israeli government about its duty to respect international law and to preserve civilian lives in Gaza, and for its military to show restraint.

“The UK is clear and has been consistently clear that Israel has the right to self defence and the right to secure the release of those who are kidnapped on Oct. 7,” Cleverly told the Cairo Peace Summit hosted by Egypt.

“We are also clear that we must work and they must work to alleviate the suffering of the Palestinian people in Gaza, and that their actions are in accordance with international law.

“Despite the incredibly difficult circumstances, I have called for discipline and professionalism and restraint from the Israeli military,” he added.

Cleverly said the international community needed to work to prevent the situation in Gaza provoking a regional conflict, saying it was what Hamas wanted.

“We have a duty, a duty to work together to prevent instability from engulfing the region, and claiming yet more lives,” Cleverly said.

“We must, therefore, ensure that Hamas does not win. Rather, we must ensure the peaceful coexistence wins.”

(Reporting by Michael Holden; Editing by Toby Chopra)