Actor Mark Ruffalo is drawing criticism on social media after apologizing for statements he made against Israel amid the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
The Avengers: Endgame actor took to Twitter on Monday to tweet the apology. " I have reflected & wanted to apologize for posts during the recent Israel/Hamas fighting that suggested Israel is committing "genocide," he wrote.
"It's not accurate, it's inflammatory, disrespectful & is being used to justify antisemitism here & abroad. Now is the time to avoid hyperbole," Ruffalo added.
Mark Ruffalo Faces Criticism, 'It's Strictly Accurate,' Say Netizens
Ruffalo's tweet immediately sparked backlash with Twitter users criticizing him for backing down from his statements condemning Israel because it was being used to "justify" anti-semitism and drawing his attention to the true definition of genocide.
"Don't back down. When a population is targeted for extermination, that's what you call it: genocide," wrote one user.
"I love and respect your activism, but take it from a Jew, the term genocide is fitting since it is indeed the aim of Zionism to remove every Arab from the land, which has been done by ethnic cleansing and mass murders," commented another.
Here are some of the other reactions on Twitter:
Ruffalo's apology came following weeks of violence in Israel and Palestine. In just one week, following the Israeli government's attempts to take over Sheikh Jarrah, a Palestinian territory, Israeli government forces have killed 200 Palestinians, including 59 children.
Violence in the Palestinian territory of Gaza escalated over the last week with Israeli forces striking scores of targets in the Hamas-controlled region with airstrikes in response to hundreds of rockets that were launched by the militant group last week in the wake of the evacuation of Palestinians. Ruffalo was one of many other celebrities who expressed their support for Palestinians.
Ruffalo's Past Criticism of Israel
Ruffalo, a long-time critic of Israel, Ruffalo was one of many other celebrities who expressed their support for Palestinians in the wake of the violence. The 53-year-old actor called for sanctions on Israel following the eviction of thousands of Palestinians from Jerusalem.
Days earlier, on May 6, he retweeted a post by former Pink Floyd bassist Roger Waters, in which the latter called Israel an apartheid state because of the pending eviction of several Arab families from homes in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of Jerusalem.
In October 2020, the Hollywood A-lister also called out Israeli apartheid during an interview on the Mehdi Hasan Show. Speaking to the British journalist, Ruffalo said: "My connection to Palestine came through Palestinians and hearing their stories and then watching this asymmetrical warfare being enacted upon them. That kind inequality, that kind of oppression, that kind of apartheid."