Israeli President Reuven Rivlin sent a letter of condolence to Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi for the twin suicide attacks carried out by ISIS against Egyptian Coptic churches on Palm Sunday. At least 28 people were killed at St. George’s Cathedral in the city of Tanta, while at least 17 people died at St. Mark’s Cathedral in Alexandria, the historic seat of the Coptic pope. Dozens more were injured in the blasts.
"I was shocked to hear of the tragic bombing attacks on innocent Egyptians at places of worship in Tanta and Alexandria,” Rivlin wrote. “On behalf of my wife, Nechama, the people of Israel and myself, I send our sincere condolences to Your Excellency and to all the people of Egypt at this difficult time.” He asked el-Sisi to convey his heartfelt wishes to the families of the victims and to the injured.
In a statement, Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely emphasized, “Terror doesn’t stop in Stockholm, St. Petersburg, Berlin, London or Jerusalem. Today’s terror attack near Cairo reminds us that Egypt too is under attack. Alongside the sorrow and grief, we need to join forces against the forces of evil and terror with an iron fist. Israel is part of the international campaign against terror wherever it strikes and is ready to assist in order to rein it in.”
Israeli pride, Jewish pride--
The Israel Defense Forces announced on Sunday that it had admitted seven wounded Syrians into Israel for medical treatment, The Jerusalem Post reported. The Syrians – four women, two children, and one man – were wounded by shrapnel during fighting in the Syrian Golan Heights and were brought into Israel Thursday night.
More than 3,000 Syrians injured in the civil war ravaging their country have been treated in Israel. Visiting the Western Galilee Medical Center in Nahariya, which has admitted the majority of wounded Syrians, Israeli President Reuven Rivlin told the staff, “Your business is pride. Israeli pride, Jewish pride. It is proof that the world is built on kindness. Israel will continue to do everything it can with responsibility and wisdom, in order to alleviate the suffering of the people who experience daily slaughter here on the other side of the border.”
The Israeli cabinet agreed on Sunday to examine the possibility of treating child victims of a sarin gas attack launched last week by the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on the town of Khan Sheikhoun in Idlib province. The proposal was introduced by Transportation Minister Israel Katz, who said, “I see it as our obligation as Jews and Israelis to provide assistance to those wounded in the gas attacks in Syria, among them many children.”
Israelis from across the political spectrum applauded U.S. strikes on a Syrian air base in the aftermath of the chemical weapons attack last week. “Israel fully supports the American attack on Syria,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said, adding that “they [the Americans] did this for moral reasons in light of the difficult scenes from Idlib and also to make it clear that there is a price for using chemical weapons.” In the aftermath of the attack, Rivlin declared, “We, as a people who survived the greatest of atrocities and rose from the ashes to be a strong and secure nation, we will do all we can to continue to aid the survivors of the horrors in Syria. We know all too well how dangerous silence can be, and we cannot remain mute.”
More terror from Sinai--
ISIS’s branch in the Sinai Peninsula claimed responsibility for a rocket attack on a southern Israeli community on Monday, shortly before the beginning of the Passover holiday. “The fighters of the Islamic State have bombed the Jewish settlement in southern Palestine with a Grad rocket,” Sinai Province declared in a statement. The rocket landed on a greenhouse in Yuval, a town in Israel’s southern Eshkol region that borders Egypt and the Gaza Strip. While no one was injured, a 50-year-old man was treated for an anxiety attack.
Sinai Province also claimed responsibility for firing four rockets at the Israeli resort city of Eilat in February, ominously warning, “The future will be more calamitous with Allah’s permission.”
The Sinai-based jihadists have close ties to the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, with one Egyptian official observing that Hamas transformed Sinai Province from “a gang of Bedouin with light weapons into a well-trained, well-armed group of 800 militants.” These close links have enraged the Egyptian government and army, which are frequently targeted by Sinai Province. The group has also on several occasions fired at Israel.
Hamas provides medical care to Sinai Province fighters and helps the ISIS affiliate smuggle weapons into Egypt, the Times of Israel reported in December. Arik Agassi reported for The Tower (The Israel Project's publication) in January 2016 that the alliance between Hamas and Sinai Province, which also includes funding and military training, serves as part of Iran’s plan to establish its hegemony across the Middle East.
Teaching life-saving skills--
Senior first-aid instructors and paramedics Eliaz Mor and Amir Namyot from Magen David Adom – Israel’s national emergency-response organization – are spending two weeks in India training instructors within the Indian Red Cross. This is part of a joint project among MDA, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and the Indian Red Cross to improve first response in India, a country prone to disasters and traffic accidents. The two organizations approached MDA a year ago requesting help with training Indian senior first-aid instructors, who have new first-aid guidelines and needed practical instruction. The first workshop took place last year. The Indian Red Cross instructors will be teaching first aid to Indian civilians based on the new program. “We are happy to share our knowledge and experience with others,” said Mor and Namyot. “Even in today’s world, when technology is engrained in all walks of life, there is yet to be a substitute for a hand pressing down on a bleeding wound within the first few minutes of treatment. The skills that these instructors are learning are lifesaving.” (via Israel21c)