UFC legend Conor McGregor criticized Sunday the remarks of Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, who praised the release of Israeli-Irish citizen, 9-year-old Emily Hand from Hamas captivity, but in the X post neglected to mention she was a freed hostage.
"She was abducted by an evil terrorist organization," McGregor wrote in an X post. "What is with you and your government and your paid for media affiliates constantly down playing/attempting to repress horrific acts that happen to children. You are a disgrace. The day after a stabbing of children in Ireland, NOT ONE PAPER HAD IT ON THEIR FRONT COVER. We will not forget."
Following the turmoil caused by his statement, Leo Varadkar released the full statement regarding the release of Emily Hand.
"This is a day of enormous joy and relief for Emily Hand and her family. An innocent child who was lost has now been found and returned, and our country breathes a massive sigh of relief. Our prayers have been answered."
"A little girl was snatched from her home and held captive for almost seven weeks. She spent her ninth birthday as a hostage. We hope she will soon heal and recover from the traumatic experience in the loving embrace of her family."
"For her family, these seven weeks have been a slow and cruel torture. We all recall the initial response from her father Tom Hand - the painful grief mixed with relief with the mistaken belief that his daughter had not been taken hostage, which turned into an ember of hope when it was discovered she was still alive. Throughout all these different emotions his love has been constant."
"Emily now returns to her family, but we cannot forget that many more hostages remain in captivity in Gaza. Their fate is unknown, but we hope that like Emily, they will also be allowed to return to their homes and their families. We think of all the families suffering in this troubled region, and we redouble our efforts to work for a permanent ceasefire, and for a just a lasting peace."
However, even after releasing the full statement, the Irish prime minister failed to mention that Hamas terrorists are the ones responsible for the kidnapping of Emily Hand and other Israelis who remain in Gaza.
President Isaac Herzog also slammed Varadkar for neglecting details on the matter, saying "The statement by the Prime Minister of Ireland last night, in relation to the release of eight-year-old Emily Hand, was utterly unconscionable. Emily did not go missing. She did not go for a walk and lose her way. Emily was kidnapped at gunpoint by vile, monstrous murderers, and held captive denied any contact with her family, and the world – even the Red Cross."
"States, and certainly leaders of states, must first and foremost exhibit responsibility and tell the truth. Emily was kidnapped from her home by Hamas terrorists. Emily and her family are Israeli victims of the Hamas terrorist organization. The intentional omittance of the words 'Israel', 'kidnapped', 'terrorists' or 'Hamas' is shameful, ignores the reality and the facts, and does not fit any of the values of morality, humanity, and peace."
"At the very moment when our are looking expectantly for the third set of women and children held hostage by Hamas to be released, I want to say once again: We will continue, as a people and a state, to work to return every one of our sons and daughters – out of a supreme moral duty. The daily psychological terrorism of Hamas will not deter us from our just, straight, and determined path."