WASHINGTON, May 11 (Xinhua) -- The United States on Tuesday continued to call for de-escalation of the deadly clashes between Israelis and Palestinians, denouncing extremism that inflicted violence on both sides.
"Israel has the right to defend itself and to respond to rocket attacks," State Department spokesman Ned Price said during a daily briefing. "The Palestinian people also have the right to safety and security, just as Israelis do."
Price told reporters that Secretary of State Antony Blinken talked with his Israeli counterpart Gabi Ashkenazi earlier in the day "to condemn the rocket attacks and to reiterate this important message of de-escalation."
The United States deeply regrets the loss of life of both Israelis and Palestinians, Price added. "We are urging this message of de-escalation to see this loss of life come to an end."
The tit-for-tat trade of fire between militant groups in the Gaza Strip and Israel has been mounting on Tuesday, leaving 28 Palestinians and three Israelis killed and dozens of others wounded from both sides.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said on the same day that the Biden administration's primary focus is to convey a clear message of supporting de-escalation.
She also denounced extremism that had inflicted violence on both communities, stressing Jerusalem "must be a place of coexistence."
"We will also continue to support a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict," she added. "That is the only way to ensure that just and lasting peace the two peoples have struggled to achieve."
The current wave of violence between Israel and Gaza militant groups is the first of its kind since the last large-scale air and ground offensive that Israel waged on the Palestinian enclave for 50 days in 2014.