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13th May 2024

Gary Lineker says he ‘can’t be silent about what’s happening’ in Gaza

Charlie Herbert

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‘I cry on a regular basis when I see certain images on social media’

Gary Lineker has said he “can’t be silent about what’s happening” in Gaza, describing the situation there as “utterly awful.”

The BBC presenter was speaking to media platform Zeteo about the conflict, and was vocal in his criticism of Israel’s actions in Palestine.

Lineker said it is “not antisemitic to say what Israel is doing is wrong”, adding that he “can’t see how everybody doesn’t see it that way.”

He said: “I can’t think of anything that I’ve seen worse in my lifetime, the constant images of children losing their lives, day in, day out.”

The Match of the Day host continued: “We all know October 7th happened and the Hamas thing, but the minutes you raise your voice against what they [Israel] are now doing there, you get accused of being a supporter of Hamas.”

After saying he understands “why most people refrain” from speaking about the conflict due to what he labelled “heavy lobbying,” Lineker said he couldn’t “be silent about what’s happening.”

He said: “I’m getting on a bit now, I’m fairly secure, and I can’t be silent about what’s happening. It’s so, so utterly awful. And now they’re talking about going into Rafah, where they’ve sent everybody.

“It’s not anti-semitic to what Israel is doing is wrong, and I just can’t see how everybody doesn’t see it that way now.

“Whatever the cause, whatever started it – we all know the history of this area of the world goes [back] way before October 7 – but it’s truly dreadful. I cry on a regular basis when I see certain images on social media.”

The Israeli military has been carrying out an intense campaign in Gaza after Hamas killed an estimated 1,200 Israelis and took 252 others hostage in attacks on October 7.

In response, Israel has launched a huge military operation in Gaza in an effort to destroy Hamas. According to the territory’s Hamas-run health ministry, more than 35,000 people have been killed in Gaza since then. According to the UN, more than 13,800 of those killed were children.

A humanitarian crisis has been declared in Gaza, and Israel is facing growing pressure from the international community to prevent further civilian casualties.

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