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Gaza flotilla raid sparks press fury at Israel

Anti-Israeli demonstration in Indonesia
The raid sparked strong international condemnation

The raid on the Gaza aid flotilla and its bloody end has unleashed a wave of anger against Israel in the wider region.

Commentators in the Palestinian territories and other Arabic-speaking countries decry the attack as a crime and demand that Israel be punished for its actions. Some, however, hope that the incident will galvanise world opinion against Israel, even among its traditional allies in the West.

In Turkey, several of whose citizens were killed in the Israeli attack, commentators predict a near complete rupture in the two countries' relations, which were traditionally cordial but have been deteriorating rapidly in recent years.

There is also anger among Israeli commentators, with several accusing the authorities of walking into what they see as a trap aimed at inflaming global opinion against the country. Others, however, defend the Israeli forces' actions.

Palestinian

HASAN AL-BATAL IN AL-AYYAM

Israel preferred to go into battle in order to deter any greater attempts to break the siege, risking what is left of its reputation in the world. Thus, it risked a bloody confrontation that will have repercussions that can only increase its isolation. This confrontation will not, however, deter our people or the solidarity activists.

EDITORIAL IN AL-QUDS

The crime has naturally and logically shocked all of our people. Nevertheless, we urge them, regardless of where they are, to practice self-restraint and prevent our reaction from getting out of control, because this is exactly what Israel is looking for at a time when it finds itself in an unprecedented predicament: It is increasingly losing its supporters all around the world.

MUSTAFA AL-SAWWAF IN FILASTIN (PRO-HAMAS)

We need now a different deterrence. Israel has taken the battle to the international arena by committing a crime in international waters. Consequently, the resistance should be expanded to all areas and its strategy should be changed. Israel must be made to understand that it will pay a price, not just in words but also with actions.

Wider Middle East

ABD-AL-BARI ATWAN IN UK-BASED AL-QUDS AL-ARABI

Binyamin Netanyahu and the members of his right-wing government have failed to understand the magnitude of the success they have given the Palestinian people and the Arab and Muslim nations with the massacre of the Freedom Flotilla. Yes, we have lost 20 martyrs but we have gained the support of more than 70 million people in Turkey.

EDITORIAL IN EGYPT'S AL-AHRAM

This brutal massacre cannot be justified by any excuse. It is, by all objective criteria and international norms, a crime that was premeditated and deliberate. Therefore, Israel cannot escape from this massacre and should be made responsible. The international community should also shoulder its responsibility and assert that Israel is guilty of the massacre.

EDITORIAL IN SAUDI AL-JAZIRAH

This is a horrible crime against all of humanity, as the people supporting the Palestinians besieged in Gaza represent the conscience of humanity, which Israel is trying to strangle. This terrorist action by Israel against the international community's will should be met by action proportionate to the crime. The only such response is to immediately take the initiative to break the siege on the people of Gaza.

Turkey

MEHMET ALI BIRAND IN POSTA

This incident will undermine our already tense relations. There is no chance to repair them any more. From now on, no one can talk about the old Turkish-Israeli alliance. Turkey will be affected by this situation, but it is Israel which will be wounded most. The cost of losing an ally like Turkey will be heavy for Israel.

MEHMET Y. YILMAZ IN HURRIYET

The Israeli government raiding a civilian ship in international waters and killing defenceless people is nothing but banditry. This attitude is the answer of the racist-fascist Israeli government to the efforts in the Middle East for a fair peace. If Israel wants to live in peace, it has to solve this issue!

CENGIZ CANDAR IN RADIKAL

Israel has attacked unarmed people from Turkey who were taking 'humanitarian aid' to Gaza. A country killing the people of another country in this way could even be considered a just cause for war in international relations. Of course, Turkey will not declare war against Israel. But the response to Israel must be heavy. The punishment of this rogue state must be very severe.

Israel

SIMA KADMON IN YEDIOT AHRONOTH

Common sense would have been enough to understand that this is exactly what those demonstrators wanted: violent confrontation in front of the cameras. Israel played into the hands of Hamas in an amateurish, miserable way.

YOSSI MELMAN IN HAARETZ

Israel entered the trap with open eyes. Israel knew that what the organisers of the flotilla wanted is to present it as a country that does not hesitate to use force. They wanted dead and wounded bodies, blood and plumes of war smoke. This is exactly what Israel provided. No matter how one looks at it, the conduct of Israel and the Israel Defence Forces is stupid and tragic to an incomprehensible degree.

EDITORIAL IN JERUSALEM POST

What happened was tragic. But it did not justify the international response. Israel's restrictions on the flow of people and material into Gaza stem solely from the need to prevent the arming of Hamas and its terrorist allies. The premeditated refusal of those aboard one of the ships to act peacefully when confronted by IDF troops was the trigger for the violence at sea.



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