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Rallies in Australia against Gaza attacks

Rallies have been held in Sydney and Melbourne to protest attacks in Gaza as conflict continues between Israeli forces and Hamas militants.

Thousands gathered in Sydney and hundreds in Melbourne to protest against Israel, mirroring similar protests in other cities around the world.

Protesters outside Sydney’s Town Hall carried Palestinian flags and placards demanding “Free Palestine” and “block weapons to Israel”.

A young girl attended the rally with her parents holding a sign that said: “Israel is killing children like me”.

Many people shouted: “From the river to sea, Palestine will be free”.

Earlier this week, Australian Foreign Minister Marise Payne urged for an end to the violence in the Gaza Strip as the death toll rises.

Senator Payne said the government was deeply concerned about escalating violence in Israel, Gaza and the West Bank.

“We’ve unequivocally called on all leaders to take immediate steps to halt violence, to maintain restraint, and to restore calm,” she said at a press briefing in Washington on Friday.

It follows Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Thursday restating the government’s policy of a two-state solution between Israel and Palestine, describing Australia as an agent for peace.

He urged Australians with ties to the conflict to act with tolerance and respect.

“By all means, people can have concerns and views, and there is a tolerance for that, but at the same time we do not want to import the troubles of other parts of the world into this country,” Mr Morrison said.

There were no reports on Sunday night of arrests or misbehaviour at either of the day’s protests.

More than 130 have been killed in Gaza amid the latest conflict which flared on Monday and continued into the weekend.

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