TEL AVIV — In what seems to be another indication of thawing relations between Israel and Gulf states, several prominent figures have come forward and publicly condemned the Hezbollah terror group for attacking Israel and expressed support for the Jewish state’s right to retaliate.
Bahraini Foreign Minister Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa, who has in the past expressed support for Israel’s right to self defense, slammed the Lebanese government for allowing Sunday’s attack to take place.
“The aggression of one state on another is something prohibited by international law,” he wrote on Twitter.
“A state standing by, watching battles taking place on its borders and putting its people at risk, is a state that greatly neglects its responsibilities,” he added.
On Sunday, Hezbollah fired several anti-tank guided missiles at an army base and struck a military APC in northern Israel in an apparent reprisal for an Israeli attack in Syria that saw two of the terror group’s operatives killed. No one was harmed in the attack.
Israel retaliated by firing at around a hundred Hezbollah targets inside Lebanon.
In a separate tweet Monday, Khalifa also quoted Lebanese Christian politician Samir Geagea as saying it is “unacceptable” for Hezbollah to jeopardize Lebanon in facing a war not of its own choosing.
In the past, Khalifa has said Lebanon is “under total control” of the Iran-backed Hezbollah.
United Arab Emirates Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash also tweeted: “Our hearts are with Lebanon and the Lebanese people this evening.”
Gargash said the Lebanese suffer from “decisions taken by a single player and the consequences,” apparently referring to Hezbollah.
Meanwhile, in Saudi Arabia, journalist Abdul Hameed Al-Ghabin asked in a post: “Where will we stand if Israeli forces invade Lebanon to root out Hezbollah?”
“The landscape has changed completely since 2006,” he wrote in reference to the Second Lebanon War, “and with it, many concepts and values have changed regarding Israel and Hezbollah. The first proved to be a state of peace, and the second is nothing but the ugly face of Iran.”
“Most of the Arab people will stand with Israel,” he wrote.
At the start of the weekly cabinet meeting, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu lauded the Gulf diplomats for their condemnation, saying the move is almost “Messianic.”
“I welcome the remarks by the foreign ministers of Bahrain and the UAE against Hezbollah’s aggression. They condemned the helplessness of Lebanon, which allows the Hezbollah terrorist organization to operate from its territory against Israel,” he said.
“This sounds like the Messianic times, but it shows the fundamental change taking place in the Middle East. The Arab world also understands that the Iranian aggression endangers not only Israel, but the entire region as well. I call on additional countries to come out against the aggression of Iran and its proxies,” he added.