Israel warns Hamas attack is ''war on free world''; declares will ''obliterate terrorist group''
"Israel is at the forefront of the war on terror and if we do not succeed, the whole world will pay the price," said Gilad Erdan as he urged for action at UN
Israel has warned at the UN that the Hamas attack on the nation is “a war on the free world” and the world will lose if Israel fails to counter it.
Calling the Hamas attack on Israel its “9/11” moment, the country’s Permanent Representative Gilad Erdan on Sunday said: "Now is the time to obliterate Hamas terrorist infrastructure, to completely erase it so that such horrors are never committed again."
"Israel may be under attack today, but this is not only a war against Israel, this is a war on the free world, it is a war on civilisation," he told reporters before the Security Council held a closed-door meeting on the Hamas attack on Israel on Saturday and its aftermath.
"Israel is at the forefront of the war on terror and if we do not succeed, the whole world will pay the price," he said.
"Israel has one sole demand: Hamas’s war crimes must be unequivocally condemned," he added.
However, the polarised Council failed to issue a statement on the Hamas attack that killed at least 700 and took scores, including babies and the elderly as hostages.
Outside the UN and on streets around it phalanxes of several hundred police kept supporters of both Israel and Palestine from approaching the organisation’s headquarters and away from each other while police helicopters hovered overhead.
Erdan showed pictures and videos of the killings and kidnappings by the Hamas.
He called the Hamas “a genocidal Islamic jihadist terror organisation” that is no different from ISIS and al Qaeda.
Just as there can be no dialogue with al Qaeda, there can be no dialogue with the “genocidal jihadist” Hamas, he said.
He said that Iran was using Hamas to disrupt the efforts of the moderate countries in the region to come together.
"What Iran wants to achieve is separate us all," he said. "They definitely want to derail the chances of having normalisation between Saudi Arabia and Israel."
“We still want it to happen (and) we'll do everything that we can” to make it possible, he said.
Palestine’s Permanent Representative Riyad Mansour said before the Council meeting that 370 Palestinians have been killed in the air strikes by Israel in Gaza.
In what sounded like a justification for the Hamas attacks, he said that if the Israeli air strikes are "about vengeance then many Palestinians will feel they have much to avenge".
"We know only too well that the messages about Israel's right to defend itself will be interpreted by Israel as ‘License to Kill’, to pursue on the very path that led us here," he said
"This is the time to tell Israel it needs to change course and that there is a path to peace where neither the Palestinians nor Israelis are killed," Mansour added.
United Arab Emirates Permanent Representative Lana Zaki Nusseibeh said after the Council meeting that its members were “concerned about the potential for regional inflammation spillover”.
"And so it's clear that we have to do everything we can to prevent that," she said.
"We understand that right now we're in a very dynamic situation, in the complex situation and in a state of flux, and that all council members have to use both their international but also their bilateral channels to try for common de-escalation, with a focus and a priority around the protection of civilians on both sides," she added.
Also Read: 7 reasons why Hamas attacked Israel now
While “our thoughts are with all civilians that are hurt”, Robert Wood, the Alternate Permanent Representative of the US said that “what we need to focus on is this ongoing terrorist violence being committed by Hamas. And this cannot be ignored”.
“I'm glad today we heard from a number of council members that these attacks should not happen, they need to end and they condemn them," he said.
He declined to go into the proceedings of the Council meeting which could not agree on a joint statement.
China’s Permanent Representative Zhang Jun said: "We are in favour of issuing statements on this worrying situation."
"It is important for the Security Council to have its voice heard," he added.
"Also important is really to come back to the two-state solution under the peace process," which envisions Israel and an independent Palestine living side by side.
Published: 09 Oct 2023, 11:16 AM