Canada, other G7 leaders condemn Iran attack in meeting convened by Biden

Click to play video: 'Israel-Iran: World leaders condemn Tehran’s ‘unprecedented’ attack, urge de-escalation'
Israel-Iran: World leaders condemn Tehran’s ‘unprecedented’ attack, urge de-escalation
WATCH - Israel-Iran: World leaders condemn Tehran's 'unprecedented' attack, urge de-escalation – Apr 14, 2024

U.S. President Joe Biden convened the Group of Seven advanced democracies on Sunday to coordinate a rebuke to Iran for its unprecedented and largely unsuccessful aerial attack on Israel and to prevent a wider regional escalation.

After their videoconference, the leaders issued a joint statement “unequivocally condemning in the strongest terms” the direct attack by Iran while expressing “our full solidarity and support to Israel” and reaffirming “our commitment towards its security.”

The G7 — made up of the U.S., Italy, Japan, Germany, France, Britain and Canada — also said that Iran, “with its actions, has further stepped toward the destabilization of the region and risks provoking an uncontrollable regional escalation.” They said their nations “stand ready to take further measures now and in response to further destabilizing initiatives.”

The United States assisted Israel in shooting down dozens of drones and missiles fired by Tehran in what was the first time that Iran has launched a direct military assault on Israel. Israeli authorities said 99 per cent of the inbound weapons were shot down without causing any significant damage.

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“At my direction, to support the defense of Israel, the U.S. military moved aircraft and ballistic missile defense destroyers to the region over the course of the past week,” Biden said in a statement late Saturday. “Thanks to these deployments and the extraordinary skill of our servicemembers, we helped Israel take down nearly all of the incoming drones and missiles.”

Biden, in a call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that night, urged that Israel claim victory for its defense prowess as the president aimed to dissuade America’s closest Mideast ally from a larger retaliatory strike against Iran. Biden, according to a senior administration official, told Netanyahu that the U.S. would not participate in any offensive action against Iran. The official was not authorized to publicly discuss the private conversation and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Click to play video: 'Former Israeli PM Naftali Bennett on Iran: ‘If they directly attack Israel, clearly Israel will retaliate’'
Former Israeli PM Naftali Bennett on Iran: ‘If they directly attack Israel, clearly Israel will retaliate’

“I told him that Israel demonstrated a remarkable capacity to defend against and defeat even

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unprecedented attacks -– sending a clear message to its foes that they cannot effectively threaten the security of Israel,” Biden said in his statement.

Biden had a call Sunday with Jordan’s King Abdullah II in which the king said that any “escalatory measures” by Israel would lead to a broader conflict in the region, according to the Royal Court. There was no immediate White House summary of the call.

The G7 meeting, Biden said, was intended “to coordinate a united diplomatic response to Iran’s brazen attack.”

The effort to encourage Israel to show restraint mirrored ongoing American efforts to curtail Israel’s war against Hamas in Gaza, which is now in its seventh month, and to do more to protect civilian lives in the territory.

The U.S. and Israel had been bracing for an attack for days after Iran said it would retaliate for a  suspected Israeli strike this month on an Iranian consular building in Syria that killed 12 people, including two senior Iranian generals in the Revolutionary Guard’s elite Quds Force.

Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, the top Republican on the Senate Intelligence Committee, criticized White House for “leaking it to the press” that Biden told Netanyahu to take the win and not retaliate.
Rubio told CNN’s “State of the Union” that it wast “part of the White House’s efforts to appease” people calling for a cease-fire in Gaza.


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