Lula compares Israel’s actions in Gaza to Hitler’s genocide

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reacted strongly to Lula’s comments, calling them “shameful and serious.”

On Sunday, Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva made strong remarks against Israel’s actions in the Gaza Strip, where it is fighting the Palestinian militant group Hamas. He said that Israel was killing Palestinian civilians in a way that resembled Adolf Hitler’s genocide of the Jews.

He spoke to the media in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where he was a guest at the African Union’s annual summit. He said that the situation in Gaza was not a war, but a genocide. He remarked that Israel had a well-equipped army, while the Palestinians had only women and children, and that the Palestinian people were facing a tragedy that was similar to what the Jews faced under Hitler.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reacted strongly to Lula’s comments, calling them “shameful and serious.” He said that Lula was insulting the memory of the six million Jews who died in the Holocaust and attacking the Jewish State with anti-Semitic rhetoric. He said that Lula should be ashamed of himself. He spoke in Jerusalem in the evening.

Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz said that his government had called Brazil’s ambassador to Israel for a meeting on Monday.

Lula’s statements were the most outspoken ones he had made on the conflict so far. He is a prominent leader of the developing world and the current president of the G20.

Hamas welcomed Lula’s statements in a statement, saying that they accurately reflected the suffering of their people in Gaza and the crime that Israel was committing with the support of the Biden administration.

Lula, who is 78 years old, had said in November that Hamas had carried out “a terrorist act” in its October 7 attack on Israel, which killed 1,160 people, mostly civilians, according to a report by AFP based on official Israeli data.

Hamas also captured 250 people in that attack, of whom 130 are still in Gaza, including 30 who are said to have died, according to Israeli figures.

However, Lula has also criticized Israel’s “disproportionate response” in Gaza, which has killed 28,985 people, mostly women and children, according to the Health Ministry of Hamas, which has ruled the territory since 2007.

Lula, who met with Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh on Saturday, said that Brazil would increase its donation to the United Nations Palestine Refugee Agency (UNRWA).

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