U.N. chief calls for peace in Israel

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon made a surprise visit to Jerusalem this week to talk to Israeli and Palestinian leaders about how to reduce the violence that has claimed the lives of both sides over the last few weeks.

"No society should have to live in fear. No society can afford to see its youth suffer in hopelessness," he said Tuesday alongside Israel's President Reuven Rivlin, according to a statement released by the U.N. "If we do not act fast, the dynamics on the ground may only get worse, with serious repercussions in and beyond Israel and Palestine."

Ban is expected to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Tuesday evening and Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas on Wednesday. He said he will urge both sides to take "concerted" efforts to prevent continued violence.

"Violence only begets violence," Ban said. "We must not allow extremists on either side, or those who think violence is the answer, to further fuel the conflict ... This conflict has gone on for far too long. We must, for the future of our children, turn back from this dangerous abyss."

There has been an international call to end weeks of escalating violence between Israelis and Palestinians.

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