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23 July, 2024
 
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France urges de-escalation amid Israeli strikes on Lebanon

International concerns over Israel-Hamas conflict

Newsroom

The ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas has drawn global attention as the death toll rises, with over 1,000 Palestinians and 1,200 Israelis reported dead. Calls for peace have intensified amid the escalating violence.

France has stepped forward to emphasize the critical need to prevent further escalation in the region. Government spokesman Olivier Véran delivered a powerful statement, stressing the urgency of averting an escalation. France's primary focus is to work towards a political resolution of the long-standing conflict, with a goal of achieving lasting peace while safeguarding civilian lives.

"Everything must be done to avoid an escalation in the Middle East, to protect civilians, and to avoid a conflagration," Véran emphasized. Notably, he highlighted that these efforts transcend any specific support for Israel, underlining France's commitment to regional peace and stability.

The French government also expressed concerns about the potential spread of the conflict to their own nation, highlighting the need to prevent its importation into France.

Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, issued a stern warning regarding Iran's role in the Israel-Hamas conflict. Iran, historically a backer of Hamas, labeled a terrorist organization by the EU and the US, has denied involvement in the recent escalation of violence.

Von der Leyen expressed concerns about the significant regional impact of the current situation. She emphasized the necessity of containing the destabilizing effects of the conflict, particularly concerning the ongoing efforts to strengthen relations between Israel and its Arab neighbors.

The President underscored the importance of closely monitoring Iran's actions, given its long-standing support for Hamas. Unity and international coordination are deemed imperative during this critical time.

Her statement followed a weekly meeting of Commissioners, attended by Haim Regev, Israel's Ambassador to the EU and NATO. Von der Leyen expressed unwavering solidarity and support for Israel, categorically condemning Hamas' recent attacks as acts of terrorism and war. This was described as the most severe attack on Israel since its establishment.

Regarding EU humanitarian aid to the Palestinians, von der Leyen assured that it will continue. Concurrently, there is a review of development funds totaling €681 million over the past three years to ensure that no EU funds reach any terrorist entities.

Von der Leyen's remarks come in the context of a public debate within the EU about financial assistance to Palestine, reinforcing the EU's commitment to providing humanitarian support while maintaining rigorous oversight of funding.

[With information sourced from Euronews]

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Cyprus  |  Lebanon  |  conflict  |  Palestine  |  France

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