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Italy condemns Hamas rocket attacks, Israel's 'disproportionate' response

18 maggio 2021 | 17.35
LETTURA: 1 minuti

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Photo: AFP

Italy on Tuesday deplored the eight-day-long barrage of rockets fired at Israel by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip and retaliatory airstrikes by the Jewish state that have killed over 200 people, the vast majority of them Palestinians.

"We condemn the indiscriminate launching of rockets from the Gaza Strip," Di Maio is understood to have told an emergency video summit of European foreign ministers.

"This is unacceptable and must stop, just as it is unacceptable to question Israel's right to exist," Di Maio continued.

Italy recognises Israel's right to protect its population but its military response must be "proportionate and aimed at preventing more civilian victims," Di Maio underlined.

"Every act of violence, provocation and incitement to violence and hatred must stop... the existing status of the holy sites must be strictly respected," Di Maio said.

Tensions exploded last week after Israeli police wounded hundreds of Palestinians during protests, and officers in riot gear stormed al-Aqsa mosque – the third holiest site in Islam.

The latest violence began in East Jerusalem in April when Israeli police cracked down on Palestinian public gatherings during the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, and the Israeli supreme court prepared to issue a ruling – since delayed – on the threatened eviction of Palestinian families by Jewish settlers.

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