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Middle East leaders praise and condemn Hamas attacks against Israel

Israel declares war after Hamas attack
Israel declares war after Hamas launches surprise attack 03:38

As the Hamas militant group in the Gaza Strip carried out a multi-front attack on Israel on Saturday, killing at least hundreds of people, Middle East leaders responded to the unprecedented offensive. Meanwhile, some countries condemned the attacks against Israel and urged for restraint, while others praised the resistance groups.

Egypt, who signed a historic peace treaty with Israel in March 1979, urged restraint on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter. The Egyptian Foreign Ministry warned of the repercussions of this escalation and called on the international community to ask Israel to stop its attacks against the Palestinian people.

Israeli officials confirmed early Monday that over 700 Israeli civilians and members of the military had died. Another 2,150 have wounded, Israeli officials said.

The Gaza Ministry of Health said Sunday that 370 Palestinians have died and 2,200 were wounded.    

Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukri made several contacts with top foreign officials to stop the escalation between the Palestinian and Israeli sides, the Egyptian Foreign Ministry said in a second statement.

Jordan's Foreign Ministry called for calm, self-restraint, protection of civilians, and respect for international humanitarian laws, and stressed "the necessity of stopping the dangerous escalation in Gaza and its surroundings."

Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Al-Safadi said on X that they held "intensive contacts with regional and international counterparts to discuss urgent international action to stop further escalation and spare the region a new cycle of violence.

Other countries praised the Hamas militant attacks against Israel. 

Iraq said on X in a statement from the media office of the Iraqi Prime Minister that "the operations carried out by the Palestinian people today are a natural result of the systematic oppression they have been subjected to for many years at the hands of the Zionist occupation authority, which has never adhered to international and UN resolutions."

Qatar, which has hosted the Hamas Political office since 2012, said "Israel alone bears the responsibility for the current escalation due to its ongoing violations of the rights of the Palestinian people, the latest of which being the repeated raids on al-Aqsa Mosque under the protection of the Israeli police."

Iran and Syria issued statements of support for the Hamas attacks on Israel through government news media. Iranian Foreign Minister Nasser Kanaani "congratulated" the Palestinian people and said, "Today's operation has opened a new chapter in the resistance and armed action against the occupiers in the occupied territories."

Lebanese Hezbollah congratulated Hamas on the "large-scale, heroic operation" into Israel, saying they are "closely following the important developments on the Palestinian scene with great interest," according to a Hezbollah statement posted on a media site.

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