UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Friday sharply condemned an arson attack by Jewish settlers in the occupied West Bank that killed an 18-month-old Palestinian boy.
Ban "calls for the perpetrators of this terrorist act to be promptly brought to justice", read a statement issued from his office.
Ali Saeed Dawabsheh was burned to death early Friday when Jewish settlers attacked a house in Duma village in the West Bank's southern city of Nablus. His parents and brother also suffered serious injuries.
Palestinian officials said the attack was carried out by Jewish settlers affiliated with the Price Tag militant group.
"Continued failures to effectively address impunity for repeated acts of settler violence have led to another horrific incident involving the death of an innocent life. This must end," the UN statement said.
It said the absence of a political process and Israel's illegal settlement expanding activities, as well as its demolition of Palestinian homes, had "given rise to violent extremism on both sides.
"This presents a further threat to the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people for statehood as well as to the security of the people of Israel," read the statement.
International law views East Jerusalem and the West Bank as occupied territories and deems any construction of Israeli settlements on the land to be illegal.
Earlier Friday, UN's top Mideast envoy Nickolay Mladenov also condemned the "heinous" attack, calling it an act carried out for a political objective.
“We must not permit such acts to allow hate and violence to bring more personal tragedies and to bury any prospect of peace," said Mladenov, who is the UN's special coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process.
"This reinforces the need for an immediate resolution of the conflict and an end to the occupation,” he added.
Direct peace talks between Israel and Palestinians remain deadlocked amid Israel's unilateral settlement-building policies in occupied lands and Palestinians’ efforts on international recognition of their statehood.