The EU on Saturday called for restraint from all sides to avoid further escalation and casualties in the Gaza Strip.
"The EU calls for maximum restraint on all sides in order to avoid a further escalation and further casualties," in and around Gaza, the lead spokesperson of the bloc's diplomatic service, Peter Stano, said in a statement.
The text pointed out that the bloc "follows with great concern" the ongoing escalation which "has already led to a number of casualties, with a number of people killed, including civilians and a five-year-old Palestinian girl."
Stano acknowledged Israel's right to protect its civilian population but warned that a "broader conflict" with more causalities and suffering on both sides should be avoided.
He also reiterated the EU's call for dialogue "to restore a political horizon and to ensure a sustainable situation" in the region.
Twelve Palestinians were killed and over 80 people injured in Israeli airstrikes on the Gaza Strip since Friday.
Israeli warplanes launched airstrikes in the area citing an "imminent threat of attack" by the Islamic Jihad group.
The attacks came amid rising tensions across the Palestinian territories since Monday, when Israeli forces detained Bassam al-Saadi, a senior leader of Islamic Jihad, in a raid in the occupied West Bank city of Jenin.