On Saturday, October 7, 2023 there was an attack by Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) on Israeli occupation sitesIn response to the violations committed by the Israeli occupation forces in the West Bank and occupied Jerusalem. The attack was described as an unprecedented, multi-front attack on Israel, with militants firing thousands of rockets and infiltrating the heavily fortified border in several locations, catching the country off-guard on a major holiday. The attack resulted in at least 1300 people being killed and hundreds wounded, making it the deadliest attack in Israel in years. Israel has declared war on Hamas, and the Israeli government is under intense public pressure to topple Hamas. The conflict has escalated, with Israel conducting a large-scale strike on Hamas targets in Gaza, and Hamas militants holding Israeli soldiers hostage in Gaza
The Israeli occupation continues its policy of scorched earth in its destructive airstrikes on residential neighborhoods in the Gaza Strip for the seventh day of the ongoing aggression. Meanwhile, the Palestinian resistance responds by launching rocket barrages in an operation called “Al-Aqsa Storm .”
The number of martyrs since the first day of the aggression has reached more than 1,400 martyrs, in addition to 6,000 wounded. According to figures provided by the United Nations, more than 1,000 residential units have been destroyed, and approximately 338,000 civilians have been displaced from their homes within the besieged Gaza Strip for more than 15 years.
The Israeli government has also imposed a comprehensive blockade on Gaza, which includes closing all crossings and cutting off electricity, water, food, and energy supplies. This has led to a severe humanitarian crisis in the region, with shortages of essential goods and services, including medical supplies.
There are concerns that this could be a prelude to a ground invasion of Gaza and a military reoccupation of the area. The situation is particularly worrying given the large number of civilians in Gaza, with over a million people living in the region. The international community has expressed concern about the situation in Gaza, with many countries calling for an immediate end to the violence and a resumption of peace talks between Israel and Palestine. However, there has been little progress towards a resolution, and the situation remains tense and volatile.
America declares absolute support for Israel
President Joe Biden affirmed in a public statement on Saturday that his country’s support for Israel is “firm” and “unwavering” following the attack carried out by Hamas. The U.S. President pledged “full support” for Israel, which was manifested on the ground by sending ammunition to Israel and deploying warships in the Eastern Mediterranean, seen as an implicit warning to Iran, which supports Hamas.The United States called on members of the United Nations Security Council, who held an emergency session on Sunday, to issue a “strong” condemnation of the Hamas attack, while Moscow sought to support a return to the Middle East peace process.
International positions regarding the situation in Palestinian territories have been varied, with calls to end excessive Israeli violence against the residents of Gaza. Meanwhile, the U.S. Secretary of State has initiated a regional tour. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken confirmed that he will visit several Arab countries to discuss the situation in Israel and Gaza as part of a regional tour that began in Tel Aviv on Thursday.
Blinken stated in a press conference after meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that he will meet with Jordan’s King Abdullah II, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, and leaders from Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, and Qatar.
He added, “We are doing everything we can to secure the release of American hostages. I have met their families and the families of Americans killed by Hamas.” Upon his arrival in Tel Aviv, Blinken strongly criticized the (Hamas) and also mentioned that he is visiting Israel not only as a U.S. Secretary of State but as a Jew, reaffirming his country’s unwavering support for Israel’s “right to self-defense.”
Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar stated that Israel is practicing collective punishment in Gaza and does not have the right to violate international law.The British news agency “BA Media” reported that the Irish Prime Minister also called for the opening of a humanitarian corridor to allow aid to reach the Palestinians.
Varadkar told Irish radio and television, “Israel has the right to defend itself, but Israel does not have the right to commit injustice.” He expressed his concern about what he sees happening in Gaza at the moment.
He explained that Israel is violating humanitarian law by punishing Palestinian civilians, and Ireland will seek to open a humanitarian corridor to allow aid to reach Gaza. French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin has decided to ban pro-Palestinian demonstrations across the country. However, this did not prevent marches in Paris and other cities to protest against the Israeli attacks on Gaza, which have resulted in thousands of casualties during the past week.
Darmanin issued instructions to local authorities to ban pro-Palestinian demonstrations through a statement published on the French Ministry of the Interior’s website.The French minister justified the ban by stating that these demonstrations could lead to “disruption of public order” in France. Despite the announced ban, hundreds gathered in the Republic Square in Paris to condemn the ongoing Israeli bombardment of Gaza.
In a related context, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi stated that the Palestinian issue is at the heart of the Middle East conflict, and the core of the issue is the failure to achieve “justice” for the Palestinian people.
Wang also mentioned, during a phone call with Sérgio Amaral, the senior advisor to the President of Brazil, that China opposes actions that harm civilians and condemns violations of international law.
On the other hand, the Russian Foreign Ministry urged Israel to agree to a ceasefire in Gaza to allow the entry of food and medicine.The Russian Foreign Ministry stated in a press release that it is unacceptable for what it described as “indiscriminate” shelling of the territory to result in the deaths and injuries of many civilians.
This statement came after a phone call between Mikhail Bogdanov, the Russian Deputy Foreign Minister, and Hussein Al-Sheikh, the Secretary-General of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization, during which they discussed the situation in Gaza.
Western Support for Israel
The Presidents of the United States, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Rishi Sunak, the French President, Emmanuel Macron, and the Italian President issued a joint statement expressing their “steadfast and unified” support for Israel and condemning the attacks carried out by the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas) as what they described as “heinous acts of terrorism.” The White House also stated that there is no intention in Washington to deploy military forces on the ground.
The Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that Rome has reaffirmed its full support for Israel after the attack by resistance factions against it.
Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani informed his Israeli counterpart, Yair Lapid, in a phone call that the Italian government will make every effort to prevent the escalation of the conflict in the Middle East and ensure that funds do not reach Hamas.
As for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), they declared that their countries express “solidarity” with Israel while simultaneously calling for a “proportionate” response to Hamas’s attack. In a statement issued after the resumption of meetings of defense ministers of the alliance convened in Brussels since Wednesday, NATO stated, “The Allies expressed their solidarity with Israel, making it clear that it has the right to defend itself in a proportionate manner against these unjustified acts of terrorism.” The alliance also called on Hamas to release all the prisoners it holds “immediately” and strongly condemned what it described as “terrorist attacks.”
Erdogan called his Palestinian and Israeli counterparts, where he assured Mahmoud Abbas that Turkey is making every effort to end the conflicts and establish peace in the region as soon as possible. While offering condolences to Israeli President Herzog, he stated that “any step that could harm the people of Gaza collectively and indiscriminately will lead to increased suffering and a spiral of violence in the region.”
And in his recent statements, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan described the severity of the Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip as “reaching the point of massacre” against the Palestinian people, and no explanation can be found for them in any way.
Arab call to stop the escalation in Gaza
Sheikh Tamim emphasized the importance of efforts to de-escalate and spare civilians the consequences of the fighting. He also stressed the need to open safe passages in Gaza for relief and humanitarian efforts, ensuring that the region’s violence does not spread further. Qatar maintains a steadfast position in condemning the targeting of civilians, and holds Israel responsible for Hamas’s actions, considering them a natural response to the violations committed by the occupying forces against Palestinians in the West Bank and Jerusalem, as well as the blockade in Gaza.
The Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated in a statement issued regarding the situation in the Gaza Strip: “The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is closely following developments in the unprecedented situation between a number of Palestinian factions and the Israeli occupation forces, which has resulted in an increase in the level of violence taking place on a number of fronts there… and the Kingdom calls for an end to it.” “Immediate escalation between the two sides, protection of civilians, and restraint.”
For its part, the Egyptian Foreign Ministry issued a statement warning of “serious dangers of the ongoing escalation between the Palestinian and Israeli sides,” calling for “the exercise of the utmost levels of restraint.”
King Abdullah II of Jordan and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas have called for steps to prevent the deterioration of the Gaza crisis. They also condemned what they described as “collective punishment” practiced by Israel against Palestinians.
In a statement issued after their meeting in the Jordanian capital, Amman, on Thursday, they also warned of the increasing violence and its spread amid a worsening humanitarian crisis due to the intensive Israeli airstrikes in Gaza following an unprecedented Hamas attack.
Abbas reaffirmed his rejection of “killing civilians” in the war between Israel and Palestinian resistance, calling for an end to “aggression” in Gaza.He stated, “We reject practices related to the killing or tormenting of civilians on both sides because they violate ethics, religion, and international law.”