West condemns ‘terror’ attacks on Israel

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Nevin Al Sukari - Sana'a - PARIS, Oct 7 — Western capitals today roundly condemned a wave of Palestinian attacks on Israel — a sharp spike in violence that has been surging for two years.

Israel’s Defence Minister Yoav Gallant said Palestinian militant group Hamas has “launched a war against the State of Israel”, adding that “troops are fighting against the enemy at every location”.

Here is a roundup of the reactions:

A member of the Israeli forces runs past a fire rages in a house in Ashkelon, following a rocket attack from the Gaza Strip on southern Israel on October 7, 2023. — AFP pic

‘Terror attacks’ must stop

“This horrific violence must stop immediately. Terrorism and violence solve nothing. The EU expresses its solidarity with Israel in these difficult moments,” EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said.

German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said Hamas contributes to “the intensification of violence”, adding Israel “has our full solidarity” and “the right, guaranteed by international law, to defend itself against terrorism”.

France expressed “full solidarity with Israel and the victims” and underscored “its absolute rejection of terrorism and its commitment to Israel’s security”. French President Emmanuel Macron said he “firmly condemns” the attacks.

Italy also backed “Israel’s right to defend itself” against the “brutal attack”.

Britain’s foreign minister James Cleverly condemned the “horrific attacks” and underlined Israel’s right to self-defence.

Dutch PM Mark Rutte said: “Appalling images from Israel. Terror organisation Hamas is waging an unprecedented attack on Israel... This violence must stop; Israel has every right to defend itself.”

Spain said it was “shocked by the indiscriminate violence” of the attacks on Israel while Ukraine and the Czech Republic said they backed Israel’s right to defend itself.

Palestinians take control of an Israeli tank after crossing the border fence with Israel from Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip on October 7, 2023. — AFP pic

Need for ‘restraint’

“We are now in contact with everyone. With the Israelis, Palestinians, Arabs,” Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov told Russian private news agency Interfax, adding: “Of course, we always call for restraint.” — AFP

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