By Spy Uganda Correspondent
The British government has given its strongest statement yet in support of Israel’s bombardment of Gaza, saying the country has a “legitimate right to defend itself”.
Speaking in the House of Commons on Wednesday Middle East minister James Cleverly made only a brief mention of making sure “all actions are proportionate” and avoiding civilian casualties.
He focused condemnation of “acts of terrorism by Hamas” and said Israel was reacting to provocation by Hamas.
“The UK unequivocally condemns the firing of rockets at Jerusalem and other locations within Israel,” Mr Cleverly said.
“We strongly condemn these acts of terrorism by Hamas and other terrorist groups who must permanently end their incitement and rocket fire against Israel. There is no justification for the targeting of civilians.
“Israel has a legitimate right to self-defence and to defend its citizens from attack. In doing so, it is vital that all actions are proportionate, in line with international humanitarian law and make every effort to avoid civilian casualties.”
At least 217 people, including 63 children, have been killed in Gaza since Israel’s airstrikes resumed a week ago, with some 1,500 Palestinians also wounded.