European countries want a lasting truce to “end the carnage” in Gaza

European Union countries pleaded Monday, on the sidelines of a ministerial meeting in Brussels, in favor of a lasting truce in the fighting in Gaza to put an end to the “carnage”. “We must immediately call on all parties to declare a lasting humanitarian ceasefire, which could lead to an end to hostilities,” indicate the leaders of Ireland, Spain, Malta and Belgium, in a letter addressed to Charles Michel, President of the Council European, an institution which brings together the 27 member states.

This approach aims to “put an end to the carnage, the massacre of innocent civilians”, explained Irish Foreign Minister Micheal Martin upon his arrival in Brussels. These four countries are demanding that the EU adopt a strong position on this point during a council of EU heads of state and government on Thursday and Friday in Brussels.

In another letter, this time addressed to the head of European diplomacy Josep Borrell, France, Italy and Germany for their part demand new sanctions against Hamas, a terrorist organization according to the EU, the United States and Israel, responsible for the unprecedented attack launched on October 7 on Israeli soil, which left 1,200 dead.

“The three of us, France, Italy, Germany, proposed the establishment, the creation of a new sanctions regime targeting Hamas, a terrorist organization already designated as such by the European Union for a long time,” declared the minister. French Minister of Foreign Affairs, Catherine Colonna,

Hamas is already the subject of sanctions, but “we must go further and allow additional individual designations,” she said. Several EU foreign ministers expressed their concern on Monday upon their arrival in Brussels about the humanitarian situation in Gaza “which is becoming truly critical”, according to Ms Colonna.

Ministers also expressed concern about the situation in the West Bank where dozens of Palestinians have been killed by Israeli extremists. “The level of violence resorted to by (Israeli) settlers in the West Bank poses the risk of a new explosion,” Mr. Martin said. “I will plead for reporting and banning violent settlers throughout the Schengen area,” said Belgian Foreign Minister Hadja Lahbib. Ms. Colonna indicated for her part that France was considering “the adoption of national measures”.

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