There can be no justification for what Hamas did on October 7, but it’s not appropriate to call it ‘unprovoked’, Russia’s deputy ambassador to the UN Dmitry Polyansky said on Monday.
- “We unconditionally condemn what was done against Israel on October 7,” Polyansky said at a video conference, according to TASS. “There can be no justification for it.”
However, he added, any UN Security Council condemnation of Hamas needs to be tempered by “the same condemnation of indiscriminate bombing of residential neighborhoods in Gaza and the death of civilians” so that “the signal is not one-sided and unbalanced.”
- “We cannot close our eyes to what is happening there, we must be absolutely honest,” Polyansky said.
- “Otherwise the UNSC cannot count on having any role in a future settlement.”
In his words, the recent “explosion” of violence in the Middle East was caused by “many years of lawlessness and the continuation of Israel’s illegal actions against Palestine.”
- “Saying that it was unprovoked is completely unjustifiable, and we are not ready to back up this logic, like many of our partners on the international arena,” the diplomat concluded.
Hamas sent militants into Israeli villages, towns and military bases near Gaza on October 7, killing at least 1,400 people and taking 200 hostage, according to Israeli authorities. West Jerusalem has responded by declaring war on the Palestinian group and imposing a “total blockade” on Gaza.
- Russian President Vladimir Putin has condemned the Hamas attack as “unprecedented” in cruelty, but argued that Israel should not react with brutality and think of some two million civilians in the territory. Israel has the right to defend itself, but peace can only come with the establishment of an independent Palestinian state, he added.
- The Russian president has also blamed the “one-sided” approach by the US for contributing to the current conflict by derailing the UN-centered peace process.