Ambassador: Israel aims to neutralise Hamas, rescue hostages
Yakov Hadas-Handelsman said Hamas had killed at least 1,200 civilians, including Israeli Arabs, in the recent attacks. He said the attacks served Iran’s interests, adding that Iran and Hamas had been concerned about the United States consolidating its relations with Saudi Arabia, while Hamas could also time its attacks with regard to political divisions within Israel.
The ambassador also suggested that the Hezbollah organisation controlling southern Lebanon could be preparing to open a front in northern Israel. Hamas and Iran aim to involve Palestinians in the West Bank in their war against Israel, Hadas-Handelsman said, but insisted that ties between Israel and the Arab world were going in the right direction and Arab countries could less and less be divided by way of such conflicts. A large part of those countries are dissatisfied with divisions between Palestinians and their inability to make political compromises, he added.
Hadas-Handelsman highlighted the importance of the political assistance to Israel by the United States and European countries.