EU-Israel

EU demands "immediate end" to operation in Rafah

The European Minister of Foreign Affairs, Josep Borrell, issued a statement that Israeli operations in Rafah will put heavy pressure on the Union's relations with Israel. 

Israeli forces in Gaza (Photo: IDF Spokesman)

In a statement issued this morning (Wednesday), the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, called on Israel to immediately halt the military operation in Rafah.

In his statement, Borrell wrote: "The European Union calls on Israel to immediately stop its military operation in Rafah. This operation further disrupts the distribution of humanitarian aid in Gaza and leads to more internal displacement, exposure to hunger, and human suffering."

According to him, "more than a million citizens are hiding in Rafah and its surroundings and have been told to evacuate to areas that, according to the UN, cannot be considered safe. While the European Union recognizes Israel's right to defend itself, Israel must do so in accordance with international humanitarian law and provide security for civilians."

"The European Union calls on Israel to refrain from further exacerbating the dire humanitarian situation in Gaza and to reopen the crossing point in Rafah. If Israel continues the military operation in Rafah, this will inevitably put heavy pressure on the European Union's relations with Israel."

At the end of his remarks, Borrell condemned the barrage launched by Hamas towards the Kerem Shalom crossing: "The European Union also condemns the attack by Hamas on the Kerem Shalom crossing, which further blocked the delivery of humanitarian aid. We call on all parties to redouble their efforts to achieve an immediate ceasefire and release all the hostages held by Hamas."

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