Israeli-Palestinian conflict: Arab ambassadors in Brussels call on EU to step up efforts to end conflict

The ambassadors of some 15 Arab countries in Brussels have called on the EU to step up its efforts to "stop the massacres in Gaza". "The Netanyahu government only succumbs to strong pressure, and the EU can exert this pressure," Palestinian ambassador Abdel Rahim Al-Farra said on Thursday.

Wearing a scarf in Palestinian colours around their necks, the group of ambassadors addressed the press in Brussels. After a minute's silence, the Palestinian ambassadors, speaking on behalf of the whole group, condemned "Israel's unprecedented violent aggression against Palestine and the Palestinian people".

"This is our land and we will never give in"

"Nothing is being spared and the aim is to forcibly remove the Palestinians from their land," they said. "But Israel forgets that Palestine and the Arab world are united to say 'no'. This is our land and we will never give in".

The Arab ambassadors expect the same from Europe and the rest of the international community. "The EU has a moral responsibility here," they believe. It must therefore act to "immediately stop the attack on Gaza, force the opening of the crossings for the delivery of humanitarian aid and end the forced displacement of the Palestinian people".

During the question-and-answer session, the ambassadors addressed the issue of the hospital bombing, which killed at least 471 people on Tuesday according to the Hamas-controlled health ministry. They rejected Israel's claim that a rocket from the Islamic Jihad terrorist group hit the hospital.

International investigation

Jordan's ambassador, Saja Majali, called for an international investigation. "But is Israel ready for that?" she asked. "There are many examples where Israel first denies, but later has to retract its claims. Just look at the murder of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh. We are not part of the intelligence services, we cannot explain what happened."

The ambassadors remained silent on questions about hostages taken by Hamas, other than reiterating earlier statements that they condemned the taking of hostages "by both sides".


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