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Governor Jon S. Corzine
January 3, 2009
TRENTON – Governor Jon S. Corzine today issued the following statement regarding the current crisis in the Middle East:
“The current crisis in Israel and Gaza reflects a fundamental truth: Violence begets violence. What is happening now in the region underscores two important issues:
“First, all countries around the world have the absolute right and the responsibility to defend themselves against attacks on their people and their sovereignty. Israel has justly asserted that right and responsibility, as any country would, in the face of consistent and recently-increased destructive rocket bombardments against its territory and its citizens by Hamas. Civilized people everywhere must speak out against terrorist acts.
“Second, the breakdown of the Gaza ceasefire and resumption of violence are tragic reminders of the urgency to work toward comprehensive peace in the Middle East.
“Along with people of all backgrounds and faiths, I mourn the loss of innocent life and believe we are compelled by our common humanity to ensure that critical aid and assistance flow unhindered to innocent civilians in Gaza. I hope all parties respond to the urgent needs of the civilian population, and applaud Israel’s decision to open the borders for the life-saving work of United Nations agencies, the Red Cross and other humanitarian organizations.
“I pray the New Year will bring renewed efforts toward peace.”