Britain condemns 'despicable' Israel bus attack
British Foreign Secretary William Hague on Thursday condemned a missile attack on a school bus in southern Israel which left one boy critically injured, calling it a "despicable and cowardly act".
Hague "unreservedly condemned" the attack, adding it was in "stark contrast to people's desire for peaceful reform across the region".
"Violence will never deliver peace," added Hague. "I reiterate that Hamas must halt these strikes immediately, and rein in other militant factions in Gaza."
The attack was claimed by the military wing of Islamic group Hamas and was the first time an anti-tank missile fired from Gaza had hit a civilian target in Israel, prompting Israel to vow a harsh response.
"Israel has every right to protect its people," reasoned Britain's foreign minister. "But it is also important that in so doing that it also shows restraint and makes every effort to avoid causing civilian casualties."
© 2011 AFP