New York, Oct 7 (EFE) – The international community has condemned throughout Saturday the war between Israel and Palestine that has killed hundreds on both sides, after Palestinian militant group Hamas launched a surprise multi-front attack on Israeli border towns from the blockaded Gaza Strip.
UN Secretary-General António Guterres on Saturday expressed concern for civilians in the escalating conflict between Israel and the Palestinian territories, stressing that “escalation is not the answer.”
Guterres, “condemns in the strongest terms the attack by Hamas on Israeli towns near the Gaza Strip and central Israel,” UN Secretary-General spokesman Stephane Dujarric said in a statement on Saturday.
Guterres added that he understood Israel’s legitimate concerns for its security, “but escalation is not the answer; it only encourages radicalization and leads to a deepening cycle of violence and bloodshed.”
“I once again call on Israel to abide by its obligations under international law, including the obligation to exercise restraint and to use only proportionate force, and the obligation to minimize damage and injury and to respect and preserve human life,” he added.
Stressing the impact on civilians, the diplomat referred to the “dozens” of Israelis killed, injured, attacked and kidnapped in their homes, expressing condolences to the victims and their families, calling for the release of those kidnapped and urging medical care for the wounded.
Brazil, which holds the presidency of the UN Security Council, also announced on Saturday that it will convene an “emergency meeting” of the body in light of the serious escalation of violence between Israel and the Palestinian territories.
The United States government condemned the terrorist attacks against Israel and “stands firmly” with the government and people of Israel.
“I made clear to Prime Minister Netanyahu that we stand ready to offer all appropriate means of support to the Government and people of Israel. Terrorism is never justified. Israel has a right to defend itself and its people.” President Joe Biden said in a statement.
“The United States warns against any other party hostile to Israel seeking advantage in this situation.” Biden added.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke in the same spirit, reiterating U.S. support for Israel’s right to self-defense and saying he was in contact with the government in an earlier message.
White House National Security Council (NSC) spokeswoman Adrienne Watson condemned the “unprovoked” attacks, her statement also noted that National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan has spoken with Israeli National Security Advisor Tzachi Hanegbi, and remains in close contact with Israeli counterparts.
American solidarity with the Israeli government has come from both ends of the political spectrum, as the Republican National Committee (RNC) issued a statement expressing it, although it also used it to launch attacks on Biden.
The European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Spain’s Josep Borrell, condemned the strikes and warned the Islamist group Hamas that attacks launched Saturday from Gaza against Israel undermine Palestinian interests.
“Indiscriminate attacks by Hamas cause deep suffering to the Israeli people, increase tensions and undermine Palestinian interests,” Borrell said in a message on X, (formerly Twitter).
Borrell also announced on social media that he had held phone calls with the Arab League to discuss the situation, as well as with the foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia and Jordan, Faisal bin Farhan and Ayman Hsafadi, and the spokesman for the Egyptian Foreign Ministry, Ahmed Abu Zeid. Ahmed Abu Zeid.
In turn, the head of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, said that she “unequivocally” condemned the attack “carried out by Hamas terrorists against Israel”.
“This is terrorism in its most heinous form. Israel has the right to defend itself against such despicable attacks,” she said.
The head of the European Council, Charles Michel, issued a statement in a similar vein.
Other international reactions
European leaders have also condemned the attacks and expressed solidarity with the victims and some like the UK and Ukraine mentioned Israel’s right to defend itself
Turkey, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, among other Middle Eastern countries, have called for restraint and a de-escalation of violence.
Latin American governments have also condemned the attacks and issued similar messages to avoid further escalation of violence.