Photo Credit: courtesy, Tel Aviv municipality
Union Jack lights up Tel Aviv city hall in support for victims of terror

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu strongly condemned a massive suicide bombing in Manchester, England early Tuesday (May 23) that took the lives of 22 people and left 59 others wounded.

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“The government of Israel strongly condemns last night’s terrible terrorist attack in Manchester. I send condolences to the families of those who were murdered, and my wishes for a complete recovery to those who were injured. Terrorism is a global threat and enlightened countries must work together everywhere to defeat it,” he said.

US President Donald Trump slammed the bombing during his remarks in Bethlehem, referring to the “wicked ideology” behind the attack and calling the terrorists “evil losers.”

During his joint briefing with Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas, he opened his remarks with the issue of the bombing.

“I extend my deepest condolences to those so terribly injured in this terrorist attack and to the many killed and the families – so many families of the victims,” he said, describing his emotions on this “horrible morning of death.

“We stand in absolute solidarity with the people of the United Kingdom,” Trump said. “So many young beautiful, innocent people living and enjoying their lives murdered by evil losers in life.

“I won’t call them monsters because they would like that term. They would think that’s a great name. I will call them, from now on, losers, because that’s what they are. They are losers. And we will have more of them. But they are losers, just remember that.

“Our society can have no tolerance for this continuation of bloodshed, we cannot stand a moment longer for the slaughter of innocent people. And in today’s attack it was mostly innocent children. The terrorists and extremists and those who give them aid and comfort must be driven out from our society for ever.

“This wicked ideology must be obliterated – and I mean completely obliterated – and the innocent life must be protected. All civilized nations must join together to protect human life and the sacred right our citizens to live in safety and in peace.”

Various Israeli officials immediately took to the Twitterverse to express their support for the British people across the sea. Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai promised to once again emblazon city hall with the Union Jack on Tuesday night – this, even on the eve of Yom Yerushalayim, one of the biggest national holidays in Israel, celebrating the reunification of the eternal capital of the Jewish People and the State of Israel.

Israeli Ambassador to the UK Mark Regev ordered the Israeli flag lowered to half-mast at the Embassy in London, in solidarity with the people of Manchester. “Israel stands with you at this difficult time,” he said in a statement posted to Twitter.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.