German ambassador defends stance on Gaza: "Comparison with Holocaust is a no-go"
The German ambassador to Belgium, Martin Kotthaus, has responded to criticism by Caroline Gennez, the Belgian Development minister. Kotthaus said on social media site X that Israel has the right to defend itself and that Germany has a special responsibility because of the Holocaust.
Earlier on Wednesday, Gennez accused Germany of not tolerating any criticism of Israel and warned the country against "being on the wrong side of history twice". The minister has been criticising Israel since before the October invasion, which led to a diplomatic row in September.
"Germany of course has a special responsibility for Israel’s security because of the Shoah (also known as the Holocaust, ed.)," Kotthaus replied to Gennez on X. "It goes without saying that comparing the Shoah with what is currently happening is a no-go."
Right to defend
The ambassador went on to say that Israel has the right to defend itself, mentioning the hostages still being held. Kotthaus also said that Israel must do everything possible to defend the people of Gaza and called its settlements in the West Bank illegal.
"Germany calls for more humanitarian help for Gaza’s civilians and has tripled its humanitarian help in the last few months," the ambassador concluded.
© JACK GUEZ / AFP