Wednesday, February 28, 2024

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October 12, 2023 12:07 PM IST

Demonstrations in several countries in support of Israel amid escalating conflict

Israel | Taiwan | Hamas | Beijing | conflict | CST

Demonstrations, rallies, and vigils have been staged around the world after Hamas militants launched a series of brutal attacks on Israel over the weekend, moving the long-running conflict into uncharted and dangerous new territory. The outpouring of support in a number of countries is a response to a series of brutal attacks by Hamas on Israel, sparking concerns about the intensifying conflict.

In Taiwan, where the government is grappling with mounting military and political pressure from Beijing, a task force has been established to draw lessons from the recent Israel-Hamas conflict. Taiwan’s Defence Minister, Chiu Kuo-cheng, emphasized the significance of intelligence in preventing war, particularly as the island faces China’s military threats.

Although the differences between the situation in Taiwan and the Israel-Hamas conflict are substantial, the global attention on the latter has raised concerns about the possibility of a Chinese attack on Taiwan. China’s intentions have become a focal point in the international community.

The United Kingdom’s Home Secretary, Suella Braverman, has stressed “zero tolerance for antisemitism or glorification of terrorism” and has engaged with organizations like the Community Security Trust (CST) to ensure the protection of Jewish communities in Britain.

In many countries, demonstrations, rallies, and vigils have sprung up, denouncing the violence and expressing solidarity with Israel. The death toll has risen significantly in the wake of the conflict, with Israel Defense Forces reporting over 1,200 casualties. Israeli authorities have expressed concern about civilians being seized and taken into Gaza.

In response to the attacks, Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has promised a forceful retaliation against Hamas. Defense Minister Yoav Gallant has ordered a “complete siege” of Gaza, home to two million Palestinians.

Global landmarks, from the Eiffel Tower in Paris to the Opera House in Sydney and the White House in Washington DC, have been illuminated with Israel’s blue and white colors, demonstrating an extraordinary display of international support. The Jewish community has welcomed these gestures of solidarity.

World leaders, officials, and prominent figures have also expressed their condolences and shock in response to the escalating violence. Despite this support, cities have had to reinforce security around houses of worship and other Jewish institutions to ensure the safety of their communities.

In the United States, the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security have issued safety concerns, although there is no specific intelligence indicating an imminent threat. New York Governor Kathy Hochul has confirmed that state police are monitoring potential targets and vulnerable locations, including synagogues, yeshivas, and Jewish museums and cultural centers.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has stressed that Germany will not tolerate celebrations of heinous attacks against Israel on its streets, with Berlin police increasing protection around Jewish institutions. These global demonstrations and expressions of solidarity underscore the international community’s concern and support for Israel as the situation continues to unfold.

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Last updated on: 28th February 2024