Tamar Samash, the Ambassador of Israel to Bucharest, stated on Thursday that Israel does not want to change the status quo on the Temple Mount and has condemned the wave of “vicious” attacks targeting Israeli civilians. Basically, over the last two weeks Palestinians have conducted more than two violent attacks per day against Israeli civilians, killing 8 and injuring dozens.
“Israel wants to keep the status quo on the Temple Mount”
Violence has exploded throughout Israel and the Palestinian territories in the wake of recent restrictions by the Israeli government on the site that Jews call the Temple Mount. Tamar Samash stated that despite the propaganda of Palestinian radicals, Israel does not want to change the status quo on the Temple Mount and that the rumours according to which Israeli authorities plan to destroy the mosque located on the Temple Mount are simply “abominable.”
“These stories about the Jews wanting to change the status quo on the Temple Mount, about wanting to destroy the place, and the speech of Mahmoud Abbas at the UN saying that the Jews have no right to desecrate the Temple Mount with their filthy feet are abominable. They propagate hate. Israel wants to keep the status quo,” the Israeli Ambassador said.
“It can happen to anyone, anywhere”
Since many of the attacks are perpetrated by Israeli Arabs, Israeli officials are often taken by surprise.
“We cannot know from where these attacks are going to arise. (…) It is a very difficult situation in Israel, it can happen to anyone, anywhere,” the ambassador warned, stating that her daughter calls her every day from Jerusalem, telling her she got home safely and everything is OK.
“But everything is not OK in Israel. These people that are attacking us are doing it any way, by stabbing, by hitting with cars, by throwing rocks or Molotov cocktails,” the ambassador explained.
Likewise, Tamar Samash pointed out that Israel will take measures in order to deter attacks by raising the number of soldiers patrolling the streets, annulling the citizenship of terrorists and their social and medical insurances.
In what concerns the criticism that Israel received from its top ally the U.S., which is worried by the use of excessive force in recent incidents, Samash made a comparison with a mosquito that bites you and you kill it. “Do you find this gesture excessive,” she rhetorically asked. “We are a democracy trying to defend ourselves,” the official added.
Asked whether this recent escalation of violence in Israel affects Romania in any way, the ambassador said that fortunately it does not and she hopes Romanians will remain impartial in what concerns this conflict. “I hope that the Romanian public can see what’s happening in the right way and is not pushed into taking sides. It has nothing to do with Romania,” the official pointed out.
Likewise, despite current events in her country, Tamar Samash expressed confidence that the attacks will stop by Christmas time and pilgrims will be able to go to Israel.