Israel: We Cannot Sit By and Watch Syrians Die

Thursday, December 05, 2013 |  Israel Today Staff

Israeli Defense Minsiter Moshe Ya'alon this week said the Jewish state is increasing efforts to provide humanitarian aid to average Syrians, noting that Israel cannot sit idly by and watch its neighbors die.

During a tour of the northern border, Ya'alon told Israel's Channel 2 News, without going into detail, that Israel is providing food, water, baby food and other humanitarian assistance to Syrian villages just beyond the frontier.

"We can not sit by in the face of humanitarian difficulties – not while they need preparations for winter and for other needs we can work to help them with," said Ya'alon.

Many of the villages in question have been isolated from the rest of the country by Syria's ongoing civil war. Many are strongholds for rebels forces, and have been besieged by government troops.

It is notable that Israel continues to do everything it can to help the Syrians, despite the fact that the two nations are still officially at war and that Syrian forces have repeatedly taken "pot shots" at Israeli soldiers on the Golan Heights over the past year.

Ya'alon stressed that Israel would respond harshly to all aggression, but would not allow those attacks to deter it from providing all the assistance it can to those in need.

Meanwhile, Israeli army officials told the Times of Israel that the military field hospital set up on the Golan to help treat wounded Syrians has seen recent improvements.

Speaking on the subject, Col. Dr. Tarif Bader, the Head of the Northern Medical Command, told the news site that over 500 Syrians have been "afforded tax-payer-funded treatment at Israeli hospitals... I don’t know who the wounded belong to and I don’t care. I don’t know what ethnic group he belongs to or what side he’s fighting for. The only criteria is need."

PHOTO: Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon looks into Syria from the Golan Heights.

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