WASHINGTON—Representative Eliot L. Engel, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, today made the following statement:

“I strongly condemn the indiscriminate Hamas rocket attacks against Israel over the last hours, which have already injured dozens of civilians and risk the lives of thousands.  Further, I support Israel’s right to self-defense. No one should have to live under this threat, and no country should be asked to sit on its hands while citizens face a barrage of rockets. 

“The situation in Gaza is heartbreaking, but completely avoidable if Hamas were to change its behavior. Every day that Hamas clings to power, it risks the lives of Gazans and blames Israel for Gaza’s misery. The United States and governments around the world must also do more to alleviate the suffering in Gaza, including ensuring that schools open on time at the end of the month. Otherwise, Hamas will surely zero in on this population of highly vulnerable children. We can help avoid that outcome by obligating assistance in a timely manner.”

# # #