ROME (Reuters) – Italian Overseas Minister Antonio Tajani criticised Israeli forces on Monday for allegedly capturing and killing folks in a Christian compound within the Gaza Strip, saying such actions wouldn’t assist in its battle to defeat Hamas.

“An (Israeli) sniper shot two girls inside a church. This has nothing to do with the battle in opposition to Hamas as a result of the terrorists are actually not hiding in Christian church buildings,” Tajani stated, providing uncommon censure of Israel from Italy.

The Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, the Catholic authority within the Holy Land, stated on the weekend the 2 girls, named as Nahida Khalil Anton and her daughter Samar, have been shot useless within the compound of the Holy Household Parish in Gaza.

The Patriarchate assertion stated seven different folks have been shot and wounded as they tried to guard others.

Pope Francis on Sunday deplored the reported assault and steered Israel was utilizing “terrorism” techniques within the Gaza Strip, which is dominated by the Palestinian Islamist motion Hamas.

An Israeli Overseas Ministry spokesperson stated on Sunday the incident was nonetheless underneath evaluate.

Gaza’s 2.3 million inhabitants contains an estimated 1,000 Christians.

Italy has provided Israel vocal help for the reason that Oct. 7 assault on Israeli communities by Hamas fighters, however like many Western nations, it has grown alarmed by the hovering loss of life toll throughout Israel’s extended aerial and floor battle in Gaza.

“(We) strongly condemned Hamas’s assault in opposition to unarmed civilians … however we additionally need the response of Israel … to be proportionate and spare the civilian inhabitants,” Tajani instructed an annual assembly of Italy’s ambassadors.

(Reporting by Crispian Balmer; modifying by Mark Heinrich)

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