Arab nations express need for restraint following Iranian attack on Israel



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Governments across the Arab world called for de-escalation in tensions between Israel and Iran on Sunday, after Iran launched a large-scale missile barrage on Israel Saturday evening.

Iran fired about 350 rockets toward Israel, raising concerns over a regional war after Israel attacked Iranian military leaders in Syria earlier this month. Nearly all the rockets were intercepted in a joint effort by Israel, Jordan and the U.S., with minimal damage inside Israel.

The Saudi Arabian Foreign Ministry called for the “highest levels of self-restraint” in a statement, while the United Arab Emirates government warned of growing “instability” in the region.

Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry made a similar warning, urging both Israeli and Iranian leaders “to exercise utmost self-restraint and refrain from provocations that would increase tension and instability in the region.”

Shoukry said the conflict between Israel and Iran “has begun taking a dangerous turn as it coincides with the crisis in the Gaza Strip and adds tension to other hot spots in the region,” adding that he spoke to Secretary of State Antony Blinken about the situation.

The Jordanian government showed favor for Israel by participating in its defense on Saturday, with the government saying the move was to prevent Iran “from endangering the safety of our citizens and residential and populated areas.”

President Biden spoke with Jordanian King Abdullah II about the conflict on Sunday, condemning the attack.

Biden has also urged Israeli leaders not to retaliate, fearing a regional war. Israeli leaders have signaled there will be a response but have stated that they do not seek a wider conflict with Iran.

“This was a very aggressive and brutal attack, which looks like a declaration of war,” Israeli President Isaac Herzog said in a CNN interview Sunday. “But I also added immediately to say that we are not seeking war. We are seeking always peace.”



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