Genocide in Gaza, Arab world silent

December 28, 2008 - 0:0

TEHRAN - Israel has launched a genocide campaign in the Gaza Strip, but the Arab world has been mostly silent as the Zionist regime’s F-16s bombed the Palestinians, killing about 200 people.

Gaza officials said 300 others were injured in the attacks.
The Arab countries have been severely criticized for their lukewarm response toward the Israeli siege of Gaza, especially after Israeli President Shimon Peres was invited to the United Nations interfaith dialogue by Saudi Arabia.
Egypt has been singled out for refusing to open its border to the Gaza Strip to allow humanitarian relief to reach the Palestinians.
Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Hassan Qashqavi has called on the United Nations and the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) to take immediate measures to bring an end to Israel’s brutal attacks in the Gaza Strip.
This brutal and inhumane strike brings more shame upon Israel, Qashqavi said.
“Although this crime has apparently been committed to gain more votes in the election campaigns of the occupiers of the occupied territories, it also provides firm evidence that the Zionist regime’s aggressive approach is continuing.”
He also criticized the members of the international community for their silence in the face of the disastrous situation in Gaza.
“These crimes are the result of the painful silence of the international community in response to the inhumane siege of oppressed men, women, and children in the Gaza Strip.”
The Foreign Ministry spokesman addressed the world bodies and so-called upholders of human rights, saying, “The important question in this issue is: Shouldn’t attacking residential areas and massacring dozens of men, women, and children in the streets… cause any reaction or human feelings to arise, and shouldn’t this be considered… a serious human rights issue?”
Qashqavi also expressed his condolences to the Palestinians and emphasized that the Iranian nation and government strongly supports the oppressed Palestinian nation in their struggle against the Zionist regime.
Protests against Egypt
Hundreds of protesters against Israel’s deadly raids on the Gaza Strip demonstrated near the Egyptian Embassy in Lebanon on Saturday amid a greatly reinforced security presence, an AFP journalist said.
The embassy was transformed into a veritable fortress as dozens of soldiers and other members of the security forces were deployed.
The protesters were kept several hundred meters away from the building in the Bir Hassan area, where other Arab embassies are also located.
Riot police prevented demonstrators and journalists from approaching the embassy complex by blocking off nearby streets.
Some shots were also heard, but it was not known who fired them.
In Cairo on Thursday, Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni vowed to strike back at Hamas.
Turkey condemns air strikes on Gaza
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan condemned the massive Israeli air strikes on Gaza, calling them a mark of “disrespect” toward Ankara’s efforts to negotiate peace.
“I consider the action taken by Israel, while we are making so many efforts for peace, as delivering a blow to those peace initiatives,” the Anatolia news agency quoted Erdogan as saying.
Erdogan added that he had cancelled a telephone consultation with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, who was just in Ankara on Monday, and has called on the UN Security Council to intervene after the air strikes killed about 200 people in Gaza.
Turkey’s Foreign Ministry also condemned the air strikes on the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip and warned of the wider effect on the region.
“The events in Gaza will have a very great negative effect on regional stability,” it said in a statement.
“The high number of dead from the operation and the possible development of a spiral of violence raise concerns and discontent,” the statement said.
Thousands of Turks took their discontent over the Israeli air raids to the streets of Istanbul in demonstrations organized by several political parties, unions, and Islamist organizations.
Similar protests were held in other countries including Syria.
Meanwhile, on Saturday UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon called for an immediate halt to violence in Gaza.
Ban “is deeply alarmed by today’s heavy violence and bloodshed in Gaza,” a spokesman for the UN secretary general said in a statement.
Ban “firmly reiterates Israel’s obligation to uphold international humanitarian and human rights law and condemns excessive use of force leading to the killing and injuring of civilians.”
Ban also reiterated “his previous calls for humanitarian supplies to be allowed into Gaza to aid the distressed civilian population.”
The UN leader is “making immediate contact with regional and international leaders, including Quartet principals, in an effort to bring a swift end to the violence,” the statement added.
The Middle East Quartet, a group formed to help mediate the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians, is made up of the United States, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations