ISRAEL AT WAR - DAY 140

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Qatari emir, a Hamas ally, claims Israel’s allies granting ‘free license to kill’

‘Enough is enough,’ says Sheikh Hamad Al-Thani, whose country is playing role in freeing Hamas-held hostages; decries siege on Gaza Strip, doubts violence will benefit either side

File: Qatar's Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani looks on as he waits for US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Lusail on October 13, 2023. (Jacquelyn Martin/POOL/AFP)
File: Qatar's Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani looks on as he waits for US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Lusail on October 13, 2023. (Jacquelyn Martin/POOL/AFP)

Qatar’s ruler, Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, hit out at Israel’s backers Tuesday, charging they had given it a “free license to kill” in its war with Hamas and questioning what the conflict would achieve.

Major powers, including the United States, Britain, and France, have rallied to support Israel and affirmed its right to defend itself after this month’s devastating onslaught by the Palestinian Islamist terror group.

War erupted after some 2,500 terrorists stormed across the border into Israel from the Gaza Strip on October 7, killing at least 1,400 people, mostly civilians, and taking over 220 hostages, under a deluge of thousands of rockets fired at Israeli towns and cities.

Entire families were executed in their homes and over 260 people were slaughtered at an outdoor festival, amid horrific acts of brutality by the terrorists.

In the 18 days since, the IDF has maintained a near-constant aerial bombardment it says is targeting Hamas terrorists and infrastructure, which the Hamas-run Gaza Health Ministry says has left more than 5,000 dead. The figures issued by the terror group cannot be independently verified, and are believed to include its own terrorists and gunmen, as well as victims of misfired Palestinian rockets aimed at Israel that landed inside the Strip.

Some 1,500 terrorists were killed inside Israel’s territory since October 7, according to the military.

File: Then-Emir of Qatar Sheik Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, center right, and then Gaza’s Hamas terror group Prime minister Ismail Haniyeh, third left, arrive for the corner-stone laying ceremony of a center providing artificial limbs, in Bait Lahiya, northern Gaza Strip, October 23, 2012. (Ali Ali, Pool/AP)

“We are saying enough is enough,” the emir told a meeting of the Shura Council, Qatar’s legislative body, according to a translation released by the royal court.

“It is untenable for Israel to be given an unconditional green light and free license to kill, nor is it tenable to continue ignoring the reality of occupation, siege, and settlement.”

Qatar, a US ally that hosts a large US military base, also hosts Hamas’s political bureau and doubles as the main residence of its self-exiled leader Ismail Haniyeh. It is one of Hamas’s main backers, transferring hundreds of millions of dollars to the terror group annually.

Due to its close ties, the wealthy Gulf monarchy has acted as a communications channel with Hamas and is playing a key role in negotiations to release the hostages, with four freed so far.

In past rounds of violence, Qatar has also played a role in brokering ceasefires between Israel and Gazan terror groups.

“It should not be allowed in our time to use cutting off water and preventing medicine and food as weapons against an entire population,” the emir said, referring to Israel’s “complete siege” of Gaza, as Defense Minister Yoav Gallant has termed the effort to raise the pressure on m Hamas.

“We call for an earnest regional and international stance vis-à-vis this dangerous escalation that we are witnessing, and which threatens the security of the region and the world.”

He added: “We would like to ask those who have aligned with the war, and those acting to gag any dissenting opinion: what would come in the aftermath of this war?

“Would it bring security and stability to Israelis and Palestinians? Where would the Palestinians head for afterward?”

The leaders of Britain, France, Germany, Italy, and the United States have all visited Israel to show solidarity since the October 7 massacre.

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