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Trump administration ‘fully supports’ Israel’s right to defend itself

“It’s a very concerning situation that has taken place in Gaza,” said State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert. “We condemn the launching of missile attacks into Israel and call for an end to the destructive violence.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House in Washington D.C., on March 5, 2018. Photo by Haim Zach/GPO.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House in Washington D.C., on March 5, 2018. Photo by Haim Zach/GPO.

The Trump administration said it “fully supports” Israel’s right to defend itself amid a barrage of rockets fired on the Jewish state by the Palestinian terror group Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

“It’s a very concerning situation that has taken place in Gaza,” said State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert. “We condemn the launching of missile attacks into Israel and call for an end to the destructive violence.”

“We fully support Israel’s right to defend itself and to take actions to preserve provocations of that nature,” she added. “Let’s not forget that Hamas bears ultimate responsibility for the dire humanitarian situation in Gaza, and it’s a tremendous concern of ours.”

Israeli aircraft struck more than 150 targets in Gaza on Wednesday night and early Thursday in response to Hamas’s barrage. Israel’s course of action included bombing a five-story building in northern Gaza used by Hamas’s interior security forces for military purposes, according to the Israel Defense Forces.

“Hamas regime again is launching rockets at Israeli communities. Another night of terror & families huddling in fear as Israel defends itself,” Jason Greenblatt, an assistant to President Donald Trump and special U.S. representative for international negotiations, posted on Twitter. “This is the Hamas regime’s choice. Hamas is subjecting people to the terrifying conditions of war again.”

In a CNN opinion piece published on Thursday afternoon, Greenblatt called for Israelis and Palestinians to unite against Hamas.

“With the ongoing conflict between Israelis and Palestinians, it is hard to imagine that deadly fires brought the two groups together—not once, but twice—in a display of shared humanity,” wrote Greenblatt. “Yet in 2010 and again in 2016, Palestinians fought fires in northern Israel alongside their Israeli neighbors, saving lives and property.”

“These two examples offer a glimpse of what could one day be—and, frankly, what should be,” added Greenblatt. “And, today, Israelis and Palestinians have a chance to work together once more to address another deadly threat: Hamas.”

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