William Hague has expressed solidarity with Israelis and offered “deepest condolences” to the family of the British women killed in yesterday’s bomb attack in Jerusalem.
The Foreign Secretary, addressing the House of Commons, condemned the attack and drew attention to the 30 victims, eight of whom were seriously injured.
The bomb near Jerusalem’s central bus station was the first in the city in seven years and the woman was the first British person to have been killed in a bomb in Israel since 2002.
Mr Hague said the family of the victim, Mary Jean Gardner, had been informed. He added: “Our Embassy in Tel Aviv and Consulate General in Jerusalem are doing everything possible to assist her family and those who were travelling with her.”
He called for “solidarity with the people of Israel in the face of such a shocking and despicable act of terrorism, ” and said: “I condemn this attack in the strongest terms and call for those responsible to be held to account.”
Mr Hague also referred to the number of rockets and mortar shells fired by Hamas into Gaza in recent weeks, the worst barrage in two years. On Wednesday morning Israel responded to the increased violence with an airstrike on Hamas sites, which left eight terrorists and civilians dead.
He said: “I urge all parties to restore calm and work to achieve the two states which are the only lasting hope for peace.”
According to Israel’s Ynet, two men have been arrested in the West Bank in connection with the bombing.