Canada expresses 'grave concern' over situation in Israel

Canada's Minister of Foreign Affairs calls on all parties to take steps to de-escalate tensions.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Canadian Parliament
Canadian Parliament

Canada's Minister of Foreign Affairs, Marc Garneau, on Saturday expressed “grave concern” over the situation in Israel and Gaza, as Hamas continues to fire rockets at Israeli cities.

“We urge all parties to take immediate steps to end the violence, de-escalate tensions, protect all civilians, refugees, journalists and media workers,” he tweeted.

“Canada reiterates the fundamental importance of protecting journalists and will always stand for media freedom. They are the cornerstone of any fair, strong, and vibrant society and must be free to do their work. Their safety and security must always be ensured,” added Garneau.

The tweet followed the IDF air strike on the Jala Tower in Gaza City, in retaliation for barrages of rocket fire on Israeli civilians.

The tower housed the offices of The Associated Press, Al Jazeera, and other media companies. It also housed the Hamas military intelligence's research and development unit, which is responsible for several terror operations conducted against the State of Israel and its citizens.

In a statement, the IDF explained that prior to the attack, "the civilians in the building were warned, and provided with ample opportunity to evacuate the building."

Later on Saturday, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said he is "dismayed" by civilian casualties in Gaza and "deeply disturbed" by Israel's strike on the building containing international media outlets.

"The Secretary-General is dismayed by the increasing number of civilian casualties, including the death of ten members of the same family, including children, as a result of an Israeli airstrike last night in the al-Shati camp in Gaza, purportedly aimed at a Hamas leader," Guterres’ spokesman, Stephane Dujarric, said.