Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim nation, Monday condemned the massive Israeli air strikes in the Gaza Strip and said it would send medical aid to Palestinian victims.

The offensive, launched Saturday in response to a wave of Palestinian-fired rockets, has killed over 300 people and wounded more than 600 so far.

The Indonesian foreign ministry said the raids were “an overly violent use of force and disproportionate” to the rocket fire by militant groups.

In a statement, it said the rockets were “an act of self-defence” against what it called Israeli “military occupation and colonisation.”

The ministry said it hoped Israel and the Palestinians would resume peace talks.

Meanwhile, the head of the health ministry’s crisis centre, Rustam Pakaya, was quoted by AFP as saying Jakarta would send medical aid and cash of more than two billion rupiah (184,000 US dollars).

“Besides sending two tonnes of Indonesian-made medical supplies, we’ll buy more medical aid in Cairo with the cash,” Pakaya added, saying medicines cost less in Egypt and would be easier to transport to the conflict area.

More than 1,000 protesters, mainly students and members of Muslim student organisations, rallied peacefully in central Jakarka, carrying Indonesian and Palestinian flags and banners protesting against the Israeli strikes.

An organiser of the rally said they also planned to march to the Egyptian embassy to urge its government to help Palestinians. — ANTARA