U.S. President George W. Bush has laid the blame for the escalating violence in Lebanon at the feet of Hizbollah and its foreign backers. At a joint news conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the G8 summit in St Petersburg,
Bush was asked about Israel’s bombardment of Lebanon.
“The best way to stop the violence is for Hizbollah to lay down its arms and stop attacking. And therefore I call upon Syria to exert influence on Hizbollah,” he said. President Putin’s government has called Israel’s response disproportionate, as has the European Union.
Putin said “Obtaining objectives, including political ones, by the use of force and kidnapping people, is absolutely unaceptable. In this context we consider Israel’s concerns to be justified. At the same time though, the military response must be balanced.”