CRI在线收听:UN Chief Urges 'Courageous Steps' for Two-State Solution

After a meeting in Jerusalem with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the UN Secretary-General said the conflict can only be resolved through bold political action.

"Security measures alone can never be enough to solve the underlying causes of the cycles of violence that the Israelis and Palestinian people have been struggling with. To do that, you need hope, you need a political horizon, you need a leadership that is committed to peace and a just and lasting solution."

However, Netanyahu points the finger at Hamas, the Palestinian organization that controls the Gaza Strip.

"I hope the UN will highlight Hamas's crimes and understand that our security measures are aimed only at keeping our citizens safe from this threat and we use judicious force in this regards."

Ban's visit comes after Turkey and Israel agreed to normalize ties.

But Israel has made clear that the blockade on Gaza, which Turkey had wanted lifted under the deal, would remain in force.

Ban Ki-moon is urging Israel to lift the ban.

"The closure of Gaza suffocates its people, stifles its economy and impedes reconstruction efforts. It is a collective punishment for which there must be accountability. We need to speak openly of all the challenges and unacceptable difficulties that the people of Gaza face, of the humiliation of the occupation and the closures, but also of the division between Gaza and the West Bank."

As part of his trip, Ban also held talks with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank city of Ramallah.

He reiterated the importance of Palestinian reconciliation and ending the Gaza siege.

"Long-term stability in Gaza cannot be achieved without two significant developments. First, reuniting Gaza and the West Bank under a single, democratic and legitimate Palestinian authority. Second, a full lifting of the closures on the Gaza Strip in line with UN Security Council Resolution 1860, while respecting Israel's legitimate security concerns."

He also called on the Palestinians "to act effectively particularly against incitement."

Abbas, for his part, blames Israel for the conflict.

"Our hands will always be extended for peace on the basis of the two-state solution with the 1967 border but the problem is the continuation of the occupation and settlements."

Ban paid a two-day visit to Israel and Palestinian territories from Monday in a bid to renew the peace process.

At the end of the tour, he encouraged Israelis and Palestinians to take courageous steps to realize the national aspirations of both peoples.

For CRI, I'm Liu Mohan.