Gulf Arab countries are offering harsh criticism of Israel in the wake of its crackdown on Palestinians in Jerusalem and airstrikes on Gaza Strip.
Hundreds of Kuwaitis staged a sit-in outside Parliament, chanting ``No to normalization'' with Israel and voicing support for the Palestinians. Tuesday's protest, which blocked traffic and drew outspoken activists, officials and lawmakers, comes as Gulf Arab sheikhdoms with new diplomatic ties to Israel increasingly condemn the escalation.
As part of the U.S.-brokered normalization agreements known as the ``Abraham Accords,'' the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain opened ties with Israel last fall.
Abu Dhabi's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed, stressed ``the importance of putting an end to all aggressions and practices that exacerbate tension and wrath in the sacred city'' of Jerusalem. He discussed flaring Mideast tensions in meetings Tuesday with the Bahraini crown prince and Jordan's prime minister.
Bahrain also renewed its criticism of the rising tensions, with the speaker of parliament affirming the kingdom's support for a two-state solution and denouncing Israel's ``provocations against the people of Jerusalem,'' including threatened home evictions and attacks in the Al-Aqsa Mosque.
Harsh condemnations also have poured in from regional powerhouse Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, which have traditionally considered themselves among the standard-bearers for the Palestinian cause.
*This story was edited by Ahram Online.