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EU Foreign Policy Chief Says World Must Not Turn A Blind Eye To Tragedy In Gaza

22.02.2024 04:27

26 out of EU’s 27 member states have urged Israel not to take military action in Rafah, says Josep Borrell.

The European Union's foreign policy chief said Wednesday that the world cannot afford to turn a blind eye to the ongoing tragedy in Gaza.

"Too many innocent lives have been lost. Ninety percent of the population is being displaced from their homes. This humanitarian catastrophe is not a natural one. It is not an earthquake, not a flood. It is a man-made humanitarian catastrophe, and it must stop," said Josep Borrell during his speech at the G-20 Foreign Ministers Meeting in Brazil

Borrell noted that 26 of the EU's 27 member states have urged Israel not to take military action in the southern Gaza city of Rafah and demanded an urgent humanitarian pause which would lead to a permanent cease-fire.

"The issue is not that Israel has to fulfil international law and humanitarian law. Certainly, everybody has to do it. The issue is, are they doing that?" he said.

Drawing attention to the ongoing systematic attacks by illegal Jewish settlers against Palestinians in the West Bank, Borrell said that some EU states have already taken actions by sanctioning violent settlers.

"What is happening in the West Bank is the real obstacle – well, there are many obstacles, but this is an important one -- to the two-state solution," he said.

Israel launched a deadly offensive on the Gaza Strip following a cross-border incursion by the Palestinian group Hamas on Oct. 7. The ensuing Israeli bombardment has killed at least 29,313 people and injured nearly 70,000 with mass destruction and shortages of necessities.

The Israeli war on Gaza has pushed 85% of the territory's population into internal displacement amid acute shortages of food, clean water and medicine, while 60% of the enclave's infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice. An interim ruling in January ordered Tel Aviv to stop genocidal acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza. -

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