Mexico Sends Planes to Rescue Stranded Citizens in Israel
By KELIN DILLON
Following news that two Mexican citizens were taken hostage by militant group Hamas over the weekend, Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) announced the Mexican Secretariat of National Defense (Sedena) will send two planes to help rescue the 300-plus Mexican citizens that requested assistance to leave Israel on Monday, Oct. 9.
“Today a plane leaves to bring those who want to come to Mexico, the ambassadors in Israel and Palestine are working,” said López Obrador during his daily press conference on the morning of Oct. 9. There are around 300 Mexicans signed up who want to leave, the majority are in Israel. The protection of all our compatriots is being sought.”
The first Sedena plane, which left Mexico on Monday morning, reportedly has the capacity to transport 170 passengers out of Israel, with the second plane departing Mexico later on that same day.
Meanwhile, Mexican citizens Ilana Gritzewsky and Orión Hernández remain missing following their alleged capture by Hamas.
AMLO went on to speak out against the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestine, saying that “we do not want war, we are in favor of peace” and requesting the intervention of the United Nations to help resolve the situation and “avoid war.”
For its part, the Mexican Secretariat of Foreign Affairs (SRE) released a statement saying it recognizes Israel’s “right to self-defense” and condemned the “the use of force against civilians.”
The SRE went on to say it supports a peaceful, two-state solution to the Israel-Palestine conflict.
“Mexico favors a comprehensive and definitive solution to the conflict, under the premise of two states, that addresses Israel’s legitimate security concerns and allows the consolidation of a politically and economically viable Palestinian state that coexists with Israel within secure and internationally recognized borders,” the SRE said in its Sunday, Oct. 8 statement.
“Mexico observes with utmost concern the escalation of violence that this event has caused between Israel and Palestine, which has resulted in the unfortunate death of hundreds of civilians, including women and children, the taking of hostages and a high number of injuries,” continued the SRE statement.