Arab countries urge restraint as Hamas launches military operation against Israel

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Several Arab countries on Saturday urged restraint as the Palestinian group Hamas launched the biggest attack on Israel in years, killing more than 20 people and wounding hundreds in a surprise assault that combined gunmen crossing into Israel with a barrage of rockets fired from Gaza.

The United Arab Emirates called on Israel and the Palestinians to prevent further violence and preserve the safety of civilians, the official news agency reported, citing the UAE foreign ministry.

“The UAE calls for the exercise of maximum restraint and an immediate ceasefire to avoid serious repercussions,” the ministry said in a statement, according to the report.

Oman also called on Israel and the Palestinians to exercise maximum self-restraint, the state news agency reported quoting an official statement.

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The statement asked the international community and international parties to “intervene immediately to stop the ongoing escalation and resort to the rules of international law.”

Meanwhile, Qatar’s foreign ministry issued a statement saying that Israel alone was responsible for the ongoing escalation of violence with the Palestinian people.

It said Qatar calls on both sides to exercise utmost restraint and calls on the international community to prevent Israel from using these events as an excuse to launch a disproportionate war against Palestinian civilians in Gaza.

Egypt also warned of “grave consequences” from an escalation in tensions between Israel and the Palestinians in a statement from the foreign ministry carried by the state news agency.

It called for “exercising maximum restraint and avoiding exposing civilians to further danger.”

Kuwait expressed its “grave concern” over the developments between Israel and the Palestinians, blaming Israel for what it called its “blatant attacks.”

The foreign ministry in a statement called on the international community to “stop the provocative practices by the occupation” and the “policy of expanding settlements.”

Bahrain also called for self-restraint in the Gaza Strip, saying that continued fighting had negative consequences on the region’s peace and stability.

It stressed “the need for de-escalation among all parties to preserve the lives of people” in a statement from the foreign ministry.

“The continuation of violence will impede efforts aiming at achieving a just and lasting peace in the Middle East,” it said, adding that it called upon the international community to help end the armed conflict and to protect civilians.

Read more:

World leaders condemn Hamas for ‘brutal’ attacks on Israel

Saudi calls for immediate cessation of escalation between Israelis, Palestinians

Hezbollah: Hamas’ operation is ‘message to those seeking normalization with Israel’

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