The English Language Arab Press. What They Are Saying
Canada ‘condemns Hamas, stands with Israel’
Ma’an News Agency, West Bank: Canada’s Foreign Minister John Baird said Wednesday that Ottawa backed Israel over Hamas after violence flared into the Gaza Strip following an Israeli assassination. “We fundamentally believe that Israel has the right to defend itself and its citizens from terrorist threats,” Baird said in a statement. “Far too often, the Jewish people find themselves on the front lines in the struggle against terrorism, the great struggle of our generation. Just last weekend, more than 100 rockets rained down on civilians in southern Israel from positions in the Gaza Strip. “Canada condemns the terrorist group Hamas and stands with Israel as it deals with regional threats to peace and security.”
Israel must be punished for Gaza attacks
The Gulf Times, Qatar: His Excellency the Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Qatar Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jabor al-Thani yesterday condemned the Israeli attacks in the Gaza Strip that killed Hamas’s top military commander and at least six other Palestinians and said they should not go unpunished. “I condemn in the name of Qatar… This filthy crime must not pass without a punishment,” Sheikh Hamad told journalists after a meeting in the Saudi capital between Gulf Co-operation Council Foreign Ministers and their Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov to discuss Syria.
Egypt will no longer tolerate attacks on Palestinians
The Daily Star, Lebanon: Egypt’s Islamist Freedom and Justice Party, formerly headed by President Mohamed Morsi, said on Wednesday Egypt would no longer stand by as Israel attacked Palestinians after air strikes killed a Hamas leader. The FJP, the political arm of the powerful Muslim Brotherhood movement, said Israeli air strikes that killed top militant Ahmed al-Jaabari in Gaza earlier on Wednesday required “swift Arab and international action to stop the massacres.” The party, which fielded Morsi in a June election to replace toppled president Hosni Mubarak, said Israel “must take into account the changes in the Arab region and especially Egypt.” Egypt “will not allow the Palestinians to be subjected to Israeli aggression, as in the past,” the party statement said.
Hamas spokesman: We will respond
Al Jazeera, Qatar: Hamas spokesperson Osama Hamdan speaks to Al Jazeera about the latest Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip, following the killing of Hamas’s Ahmad Jabari. “Now they have started not only an attack, but it’s a long operation against Gaza. They are working to target the local leaders and also some political leaders; because of that we are expecting some days of violence,” he said. “Everyone knows that Ahmed Jabari was the leader of al-Qassam troops during the war on Gaza 2008-2009 and he was the man behind the  kidnapping of Gilad Shalit. So [the Israeli military] has started with this man because they believe they have a long revenge for him.” “We will respond, that must happen. I have to say clearly we know that this road of retaliation is very long and we have to sacrifice. And we have sacrificed a lot.”
Hit on Hamas chief ‘has opened gates of hell’
Gulf News, UAR: Israel killed the military commander of the Islamist group Hamas in a missile strike on the Gaza Strip on Wednesday and launched air raids across the enclave, pushing the two sides to the brink of a new war. The air strike that killed top Hamas military commander Ahmad Al Jabari on Wednesday has “opened the gates of hell,” the armed wing of Hamas said. “The occupation has opened the gates of hell on itself,” said a statement from the Ezzedine Al Qassam Brigades, which vowed its fighter would “continue the path of resistance.” Al Jabari is the most senior Hamas official to be killed since an Israeli invasion of Gaza four years ago.
Egypt withdraws ambassador to Israel as country reacts to renewed offensive on Gaza
Egypt Independent: Egypt has withdrawn its ambassador in Tel Aviv as the country reacted to renewed Israeli military attacks on the Gaza Strip that killed the head of Hamas’s armed wing and at least seven others, including two young children, on Wednesday. Presidential spokesperson Yasser Ali said in a statement aired by state TV that President Mohamed Morsy has decided to withdraw Ambassador Atef Salem al-Ahl following Israeli raids on Gaza that killed Hamas leader Ahmed al-Jaabari as well as other civilians. Reuters also reported that the Israeli ambassador had left Cairo with embassy staff, citing an airport source. Israel launched air raids across the enclave that the health ministry said killed seven people, including two girls under the age of five, according to Reuters. Ali said Morsy had also instructed Egypt’s UN representative to ask for an urgent UN Security Council meeting to discuss the assaults. Morsy has also directed the Foreign Ministry to submit a protest letter to Israeli authorities that demands a halt to the aggression. He also requested the Arab League chief convene an urgent session of regional foreign ministers.
Protests against Gaza violence in West Bank
Ma’an News Agency, West Bank : Palestinians protested Wednesday in the occupied West Bank after Israel launched a brutal assault on the Gaza Strip, killing at least six people. In Ramallah, about 200 Palestinians marched against the violence toward Beit El, an Israeli settlement, but Palestinian Authority security forces blocked their path. A witness told Ma’an that at least four people were detained. It was not clear where they were being held late Wednesday, she said. Two dozen people also held candles in front of the Church of the Nativity, a Ma’an correspondent said. Palestinian protesters also took to the streets in Jerusalem, an Israeli reporter said. Mya Guarnieri said that several dozen mostly Palestinian residents of Jerusalem turned up to protest against Israel’s escalation in the Gaza Strip. Around 100 people protested near Tahrir Square in central Cairo on Wednesday, chanting: “From Tahrir to Palestine, it is one people not two.”