Skip to content

Jordan’s Top Diplomat Blasts Israeli Actions in Gaza at Bahrain Conference

The IISS Manama Dialogue, sponsored by London’s International Institute for Strategic Studies over Nov. 17-19 this year, kicked off in Bahrain yesterday. Normally, the dialogue has concerned Gulf Arab countries’ fears about Iran, but this year it’s being dominated by the Gaza war. Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi offered a very harsh criticism of Israeli actions in Gaza in an address to the conference this morning. “All of us have to speak loud and clear about the catastrophe that the Israeli war is bringing, not just on Gaza, but on the region in general,” Safadi said, reported The Associated Press. “This is not a time for mincing words. This is a time to state facts as they are.” He added: “This is not self-defense. This is a blatant aggression, the victims of which are innocent Palestinians.”

According to AP, Israel had not responded to Safadi, but also addressing the same panel was Brett McGurk, U.S. National Security Council coordinator for the Middle East, who said that “a release of large number of hostages would result in a significant pause in fighting ... and a massive surge of humanitarian relief.” Safadi later offered a sharp retort to that: “Israel is taking 2.3 million Palestinians hostage.”

Speaking at the first plenary session this morning, Safadi described the Israeli government now led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, the hardest-right coalition ever to govern the country, as apparently aiming to dislodge Palestinians from the Gaza Strip. He said that “will be a direct threat to our national security” in Jordan and Egypt. “They all for years have been saying the only way to move forward is to kick the Palestinians out of their ancestral land and wipe the Palestinians out of the face of the Earth,” Safadi said.

This post is for paying subscribers only


Already have an account? Sign In