As many as 149 Palestinians including 41 children were killed in over a week of Israel’s bombing and missile attacks on the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. Members of the Palestinian resistance movement Hamas fired rockets at Israel in retaliation for evicting several Palestinian families from East Jerusalem and Israeli police attacks on the devotees at Al-Aqsa mosque during prayers. As the rocket attack killed 10 Israelis including children, the Israeli army retaliated with an indiscriminate attack on Gaza. Series of bombings by Israeli fighter jets have destroyed many houses and 10,000 Palestinians fled their homes.

The building that housed Al Jazeera and Associated Press offices was razed to the ground after Israeli forces bombed it on 15 May. Prior to the attack, the building owner was informed over telephone and given an hour to evacuate the people living there and remove their equipment. If the motive of Israel is to punish Hamas, why were the media offices bombed? When peace-loving people around the world are concerned over Israel’s attack in Gaza, the Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu arrogantly said, “This operation will continue as long as necessary”. This declaration is not only provocative but also shameless support for the cruelty on civilians.

According to media reports, Benjamin Netanyahu is in a disadvantageous position in the internal politics of Israel though he won a vote of confidence recently. It is believed that he imposed this illegal war on the Palestinians to consolidate his political position.

US president Joe Biden made phone call to Palestine president Mahmud Abbas and Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu to cease the strikes. But whether Joe Biden’s phone call would escalate or deescalate the situations, is a big question. Israel has a right to self-defence – that is a biased remark and apparently gives legitimacy to kill civilians in Gaza. Is a right to self-defence exclusively for Israel? The Palestinians have a right to self-defence too. They have a right to reclaim their lost state.

Israel simply cannot just occupy Palestinian lands one after another and kill the Palestinians, with bombs and missiles. Since its establishment in 1948, Israel has been occupying the Palestine lands, ignoring all international laws. Israel has also been oppressing the Palestinians living inside its territory. Last week’s conflict was sparked off by the eviction of several Palestinian families from East Jerusalem.

Demonstrations took place in many the cities of the world against the barbaric aggression of the Israeli forces in Gaza. Many countries including Bangladesh condemned the barbaric attack of Israel. We strongly condemn and protest against the Israeli strikes. The first meeting of UN Security Council on the Israeli strike in Gaza bore no fruit. A second meeting was scheduled to be held on Sunday. But previous experience hardly gives any hope about these meeting. There is no alternative to a united and strong role of the world community against the policy of Israeli occupation and expansion. Establishment and recognition of an independent Palestine state can only bring the permanent peace in the Middle East and the world powers will have to come forward in this regard.

The humanitarian crisis created by Israel in Gaza must stop immediately.k