US envoy stresses effort to end Gaza conflict

The US envoy to the United Nations has stressed her country's intensive efforts to end the latest round of violence between the Israeli military and the Islamic group Hamas.

Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield made the remarks on Sunday at an emergency online meeting of the UN Security Council.

In opening remarks, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said, "The current hostilities are utterly appalling."

He said, "We are in contact with many relevant interlocutors and I again call on the parties to allow mediation efforts to intensify and succeed."

Thomas-Greenfield said the US remains intensively engaged with Israeli, Egyptian, Qatari officials, as well as the UN special coordinator and his team, to define and establish conditions for a sustainable calm.

Many of the participants at the emergency meeting condemned Israel's airstrikes on the Gaza Strip that have claimed far more lives than rocket attacks by Hamas, which effectively controls Gaza.

Most of the members, except the US, maintained their positions that the expansion of Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank is a violation of international law.

China's Ambassador, Zhang Jun, who chaired the meeting, has suggested that the security council issue a press statement based on views expressed by the member states. But the US has been against the idea, saying it would not help resolve the problem.