World leaders slam Gaza rockets, warn Israel against invasion

Monday, February 18, 2008 |  by Staff Writer

Israel's Foreign Ministry on Sunday escorted a group of foreign ambassadors to the rocket-battered southern Israel town of Sderot to give them a first-hand look at the siege conditions under which nearly 200,000 Israelis are currently living.

At the same time, senior opposition lawmaker Yuval Steinitz took two visiting US congressmen on a tour of Sderot.

Senator John Kyl (R-Arizona) and Congressman Elton Gallegly (R-California) both slammed the ongoing Palestinian rocket attacks on Sderot and surrounding communities, and vowed to take the message of the local residents' plight back to America.

Recently-appointed UN undersecretary-general for humanitarian affairs Sir John Holmes also visited Sderot and also condemned the "indiscriminate" targeting of Israeli civilians.

However, unlike the Americans, Holmes warned Israel against taking the kind of crushing military action that defense officials and security experts say is the only way to effectively curb the terrorist rocket fire.

Holmes insisted that diplomacy was the only way to solve the problem, ignoring the fact that the past decade of Israeli-Palestinian peacemaking had resulted in a sharp increase in Palestinian terrorism, as had Israel's decision to comply with Arab demands by surrendering the Gaza Strip in 2005.

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