Israel and Palestine continued airstrikes against each other even as the world leaders called for restraint and peace talks. According to news agency AFP, 67 people have been killed so far, including 17 children, in Gaza and nearly 400 others have sustained injuries after days of near relentless Israeli airstrikes. Meanwhile, Israel has lost six lives to the rocket attacks by Hamas since the beginning of the week.
According to Israeli officials, around 1,500 rockets had been launched into its territory since the beginning of the week by Palestinian militants. However, Hamas says that it has launched 130 rockets at Israel. On the other hand, the Israeli defence forces have been unleashing airstrikes at identified buildings in Palestine which allegedly house Hamas militants.
World leaders have urged both to abide by the United Nations regulations and sort out issues diplomatically.
Here is how major countries reacted to the ongoing airstrikes between Israel and Palestine.
The United States
President Joe Biden has assured Israeli leaders of the US support while urging them to end the fighting. “My expectation and hope are that this will be closing down sooner than later... But Israel has a right to defend itself when you have thousands of rockets flying into your territory,” said Biden.
Russian President Vladimir Putin on May 12 urged Israel and the Palestinians to take steps towards de-escalation. "Serious concern was expressed about the continuing clashes and the growing number of people killed and wounded," the Kremlin said in a statement.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan, President of Turkey, has said the world needs to give Israel a "strong" lesson. Erdogan suggested that nations should discuss the "idea of sending an international protection force to the region in order to protect Palestinian civilians." Erdogan has been an advocate of the Palestinian cause.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, in a tweet on May 12, urged an immediate de-escalation of tensions. “The UK is deeply concerned by the growing violence and civilian casualties and we want to see an urgent de-escalation of tensions," he tweeted. Meanwhile, UK’s foreign secretary Dominic Raab has condemned rocket fire into Israel.
India has expressed deep concern at clashes and has called on both sides to avoid changing the status-quo on the ground. In a tweet, India's Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador TS Tirumurti suggested direct peace talks between the two nations.
Like other nations, China too has called for calm and restraint to avoid clashes. Hua Chunying, spokesperson for China's Foreign Ministry said, “China is willing to play a constructive role in the resumption of peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians in line with UN resolutions along with relevant international parties.”
Pakistan has sided with Palestine and slammed the attacks on Gaza by Israeli defence forces. "This is yet another reprehensible action during the holy month of Ramadan, following the increased restrictions on the fundamental freedoms of Palestinians, and the attacks in and outside Al-Aqsa Mosque," said Pakistan's foreign ministry in a statement.
Saudi monarch King Salman bin Abdulaziz strongly condemned Israel’s 'violent acts' at Al-Aqsa Mosque and measures taken in Jerusalem. He stressed that the kingdom stands with the Palestinian people until they reclaim their legitimate rights.
The European Union
The EU has said that only direct negotiations can resolve all the problems between Israelis and Palestinians. It also condemned rocket attacks by Hamas. "The firing of rockets from Gaza against civilian populations in Israel is totally unacceptable and feeds escalatory dynamics," the European Commission said in a statement issued late on May 10.
The Japanese government in a statement expressed its serious concern about the ongoing escalation between Israel and Palestine.