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Smotrich backs Lapid, Odeh accuses IDF of war crimes: Opposition split in reactions to Gaza strikes

Leader of the Joint List Ayman Odeh is seen carrying a sign which reads 'Against the Occupation' during a protest in Tel Aviv, on May 15, 2021. (Tomer Neuberg/Flash90)
Leader of the Joint List Ayman Odeh is seen carrying a sign which reads 'Against the Occupation' during a protest in Tel Aviv, on May 15, 2021. (Tomer Neuberg/Flash90)

Opposition parties are split in their reactions to the IDF’s launching of Operation Breaking Dawn targeting Palestinian Islamic Jihad targets in Gaza.

Religious Zionism chairman Bezalel Smotrich offers his full-throttled support for the government, while Likud chairman Benjamin Netanyahu focuses his support on Israeli security forces. The majority-Arab Joint List, however, blasts the government for the military offensive.

“The Israeli government is committing war crimes against the Palestinian people to serve narrow political interests, and Gazans are paying the price in blood,” says Joint List chair Ayman Odeh. “The fire must cease immediately! Only negotiations to end the occupation will bring security to the people, not the blood of innocent children.”

The calls to end the violence are also coming from within the government, with Meretz MK Mossi Raz mourning the death of the five-year-old Gazan girl the Gaza health ministry said was killed earlier today in an IDF airstrike and urging a ceasefire.

The coalition’s Islamist Ra’am party, which has regularly condemned terror attacks and violence from both sides over the past year, has yet to issue a statement.

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