Killing people inside Gaza churches at odds with war on Hamas, Italy tells Israel

Published: Updated:
Read Mode
100% Font Size
2 min read

Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani criticized Israeli forces on Monday for allegedly shooting and killing people in a Christian compound in the Gaza Strip, saying such actions would not help in its war to defeat Hamas.

“An (Israeli) sniper shot two women inside a church. This has nothing to do with the fight against Hamas because the terrorists are certainly not hiding in Christian churches,” Tajani said, offering rare censure of Israel from Italy.

The Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, the Catholic authority in the Holy Land, said at the weekend the two women, named as Nahida Khalil Anton and her daughter Samar, were shot dead in the compound of the Holy Family Parish in Gaza.

For all the latest headlines, follow our Google News channel online or via the app.

The Patriarchate statement said seven other people were shot and wounded as they tried to protect others.

Pope Francis on Sunday deplored the reported attack and suggested Israel was using “terrorism” tactics in the Gaza Strip, which is ruled by the Palestinian group Hamas.

An Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesperson said on Sunday the incident was still under review.

Gaza’s 2.3 million population comprises an estimated 1,000 Christians.

Italy has offered Israel vocal support since the October 7 attack on Israeli communities by Hamas fighters, but like many Western countries, it has grown alarmed by the soaring death toll during Israel’s prolonged aerial and ground war in Gaza.

“(We) strongly condemned Hamas’ attack against unarmed civilians ... but we also want the reaction of Israel ... to be proportionate and spare the civilian population,” Tajani told an annual meeting of Italy’s ambassadors.

-With Reuters

Read more:

Defense Secretary Austin heads to Israel as US urges a targeted approach in Gaza

Human Rights Watch accuses Israel of intentionally starving civilians in Gaza

Four Palestinians killed by Israeli troops in West Bank refugee camp: Health ministry

Top Content Trending