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French Cultural Center in Gaza Targeted by Israeli Forces

Paris, November 4, 2023

The French cultural center in Gaza, which has remained closed since the outbreak of hostilities, was reportedly targeted by Israeli forces, according to a statement from the French foreign ministry released on Friday.

The French foreign ministry revealed that it was officially informed by Israeli authorities that the cultural center was the intended target of the strike. This cultural center is the sole Western establishment of its kind in Gaza and is affiliated with the French embassy in Israel.

In response to this incident, the ministry issued a stern statement, demanding that Israeli authorities promptly communicate the specific reasons behind their decision through appropriate channels. The strike on the cultural center has raised questions and concerns, and the French government is seeking clarification regarding the circumstances that led to this action.

Thankfully, the French foreign ministry confirmed that none of the institute's personnel or French citizens were present inside the center at the time of the strike. Nevertheless, the authorities in France have been actively engaged in efforts to evacuate the Palestinian workers associated with the cultural center from Gaza.

The Israeli military, in a statement to CNN, underscored its ongoing efforts to ensure the safety of Gaza residents by encouraging them to relocate to safer areas in the southern part of the strip. This advisory comes in the backdrop of Israel's military operations against Hamas in Gaza City and the northern regions. While the focus has primarily been on these areas, Israel has also conducted strikes on several locations in the southern part of the coastal enclave.

The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) articulated their stance on the matter, emphasizing the need to counter Hamas, which they assert operates across the entire Gaza Strip. The IDF maintains that Hamas has embedded itself within civilian infrastructure and conducts attacks throughout the region. The military is resolute in its determination to put an end to these attacks, striking at Hamas wherever necessary to achieve this objective.

The incident involving the French cultural center adds another layer of complexity to the ongoing conflict, further underscoring the need for diplomatic efforts to address the situation and protect civilians and cultural institutions in the region.



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