Prince Turki al-Faisal delivers candid speech on Middle East conflict.
Speech offers significant insight into Saudi leadership’s perspective.
He criticizes both Hamas and Israel for attacks on civilians.
Prince Turki al-Faisal of Saudi Arabia delivered a remarkably candid speech this week regarding the ongoing Middle East conflict.
This speech is being widely seen as a significant insight into Saudi leadership’s perspective on the situation.
Prince Turki, a highly respected figure in Saudi political circles, openly criticized both Hamas and Israel for their attacks on civilians.
He specifically mentioned the October 7th attack by Hamas on southern Israel and the subsequent Israeli bombardment of Gaza, stating that there were no heroes in this situation, only victims.
What makes Prince Turki’s stance noteworthy is the prevailing Arab sentiment against Israeli airstrikes.
Addressing a US audience at Rice University in Houston, he emerged as a rare Arab voice critical of Hamas in the current atmosphere.
He condemned Hamas for actions that run counter to Islamic principles, especially the prohibition of harming civilians, pointing out that the majority of those harmed or abducted by Hamas were indeed civilians.
Prince Turki, a careful, thoughtful ex-diplomat and spy chief, balanced his condemnation of Hamas with that of Israel, which he accused of “indiscriminate bombing of innocent Palestinian civilians in Gaza” and the “indiscriminate arrest of Palestinian children, women and men in the West Bank”.
He took issue with the US media’s use of the phrase “unprovoked attack” in reference to the 7 October raid, saying: “What more provocation is required.. than what Israel has done to the Palestinian people for three-quarters of a century?”
He added that “all militarily occupied people have a right to resist occupation”.
Prince Turki also condemned Western politicians for “shedding tears when Israelis are killed by Palestinians”, but refusing to “even express sorrow when Israelis kill Palestinians”.
During his visit to Israel, President Joe Biden expressed that the United States grieves for all innocent victims.
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