‘Israel will stand alone’, PM Netanyahu rejects international criticism of war in Gaza. What we know so far

Israeli PM Netanyahu denounces international criticism of Gaza war at Holocaust Remembrance Day ceremony, and vows to defend Israel against genocidal enemies.

Written By Alka Jain
First Published6 May 2024
Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks during a ceremony marking Holocaust Remembrance Day for the six million Jews killed during World War II, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial in Jerusalem on May 5, 2024. (AFP)
Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks during a ceremony marking Holocaust Remembrance Day for the six million Jews killed during World War II, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial in Jerusalem on May 5, 2024. (AFP)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday denounced international criticism of the country's war in Gaza, stating “Israel will stand alone! No pressure would stop us from defending ourselves.” He was speaking at a Holocaust Remembrance Day ceremony at the Yad Vashem memorial in Jerusalem. 

The Israeli PM recalled the time when Nazis killed six million Jews during World War II, saying “no nation came to our aid” and “people were completely defenseless against those who sought destruction”. 

At the event, one yellow chair was kept empty representing the hostages still held captive by Hamas in Gaza. “I say to the leaders of the world, no amount of pressure, no decision by any international forum, will stop Israel from defending itself,” Netantahu said, flaying the outrage against Israel over its incursion in Gaza. 

He further drew parallels between the anti-Semitic sentiment now and the treatment of Jews at German universities in the US and other international institutions during World War II. "What a distortion of justice and history," he was quoted as saying by AFP. 

“You will not chain our hands... Israel will continue to fight human evil... until victory. We will defeat our genocidal enemies. Never again is now!” Netanyahu asserted. 

Hamas militants launched an attack on Israel on October 7, 2023, resulting in over 1,170 fatalities. Hamas also held some 250 hostages. Israel now estimates 128 are still being held captive in Gaza, including 35 persons whom the Israeli army alleged have been killed. Israel's retaliatory attack has killed at least 34,683 people in Gaza, mostly women and children. 

Israel attacks Rafah after Hamas' rocket attack

As many as three Israeli soldiers were killed in a deadly rocket attack launched by Hamas near the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah, where Palestinian health officials alleged at least 19 people were killed by Israeli fire on Sunday.

Soon after the Hamas attack,  Israel launched a counter attack on a house in Rafah in an airstrike killing at least three people and wounding several others, Reuters reported. “It struck the launcher from which the Hamas projectiles were fired, as well as a nearby “military structure”, the Israeli military said.

Hamas' armed wing claimed responsibility for an attack on the Kerem Shalom crossing in Gaza on Sunday. According to the Israeli military, around 10 projectiles were launched from Rafah in southern Gaza. 

Hamas' armed wing said it fired rockets at an Israeli army base near the crossing, but did not confirm where it fired them from. Reports quoted a source close to the militant group as saying the commercial crossing was not the target. More than a million Palestinians are being sheltered in Rafah, near the border with Egypt.

(With inputs from agencies)

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