Trudeau says he is ‘horrified’ by deadly Israeli attacks in Rafah

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says his government is “horrified” by the Israeli strikes that killed civilians in Rafah earlier this week, but walked away from reporters when asked what he would do about it.

His comment comes two days after horrific images emerged of children injured in airstrikes and fires in displaced people’s camps in Rafah.

Trudeau says Canada “in no way” supports the attacks on Rafah, which had become a safe haven for more than a million Palestinians fleeing Israeli attacks elsewhere in the Gaza Strip.

Canada supported Israel’s right to defend itself following the Hamas attack on Oct. 7, but Trudeau says Canada urged Israel not to continue an offensive on the southern city.

Israel says Rafah has become a Hamas stronghold and is crucial to defeating the militant group that killed 1,200 people in Israel last October, and described Sunday’s massacre as a mistake.

Humanitarian groups, including Mennonite Central Committee, say the area is too populated for any safe military operation, pointing to scenes that occurred Sunday.

“Canada does not in any way support Israel’s military operations in Rafah. In fact, we have been calling for a ceasefire, including at the United Nations, since December, and we will continue to do so,” Trudeau told reporters Tuesday on the Hill. of Parliament.

“We need much more humanitarian aid to reach Gaza and for all the hostages to be freed.”

But when pressed for information about what Canada might do, he walked away from the scrum.

Gaza’s Hamas-run Health Ministry reports that 36,000 people have been killed in the war, including fighters.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 28, 2024.