Israel’s airstrikes in the Gaza Strip over the weekend, which were triggered by a rocket barrage on Israel overnight on Friday, have prompted the European Union to issue a statement urging both sides to exercise calm.

The organization’s chief foreign-policy and defense coordinator, Federica Mogherini, issued a general call for both sides to engage in talks.

“The rocket fire from Gaza towards Israel must stop immediately,” said a spokesperson for Mogherini on Saturday night. “A de-escalation of this dangerous situation is urgently needed to ensure that civilians’ lives are protected. Israelis and Palestinians both have the right to live in peace, security and dignity. Only a political solution can put an end to the violence.

“Efforts by Egypt and the U.N. to calm the situation have the European Union’s full support,” she said.

Republished in partnership with Israel Hayom.