Netanyahu Condemns Syrian Massacre

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JERUSALEM, Israel -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a rare statement Sunday condemning the weekend slaughter in Syria, echoing similar responses by the U.N., the Arab League and several Western leaders.

Netanyahu expressed his "revulsion over the ongoing massacres…against innocent civilians…including innocent children."

"Iran and [its Lebanese proxy] Hezbollah are an inseparable part of the Syrian atrocities and the world needs to act against them," Netanyahu said.

The killing spree continued early Monday in the city of Hama, where more than 40 people were killed when tanks began shelling the city at its northern entrance, activists, whose report could not be independently verified, said.

The latest onslaught took place less than 48 hours after the government's massacre in Houla, which killed at least 180, including more than 30 children.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton issued a statement condemning the "atrocity" and calling on the international community to increase pressure on "Assad and his cronies whose rule by murder and fear must come to an end."

Arab League chief Nabil Elaraby called the massacre in Houla a "horrific crime."

The U.N. Security Council issued a statement condemning "in the strongest possible terms the killings, confirmed by United Nations observers, of dozens of men, women and children and the wounding of hundreds more in the village of [Houla], near Homs, in attacks that involved a series of government artillery and tank shelling on a residential neighborhood."

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Kofi Annan, appointed special envoy to Syria by the U.N. and Arab League, also issued a joint statement condemning the massacre in Houla.

"This appalling and brutal crime involving indiscriminate and disproportionate use of force is a flagrant violation of international law and the commitments of the Syrian government," their statement read.

Meanwhile, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said both sides "had a hand" in the massacre.

"Both sides have obviously had a hand in the deaths of innocent people, including several dozen women and children," Lavrov said Monday, following talks with his British counterpart, William Hague, in Moscow.

"This area is controlled by the rebels, but it is also surrounded by the governmental troops," Larov said.

Hague said Britain supports Kofi Annan's plan and still thinks Assad should step down.

Assad continues to blame the violence in Syria on a "terrorist conspiracy."

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