Press Advisories

18. 1. 2009 15:52

EU Presidency Statement on Israel's Announcement of a Temporary Ceasefire in Gaza

The Presidency welcomes the announcement by Israel to unilaterally cease all their military activities in Gaza and urges Hamas to immediately and unconditionally join this ceasefire.

We continue to call on both parties to fully implement UNSCR 1860.

The priority now is to ensure that no more civilians die as a result of this conflict. It is vital, therefore, that all required humanitarian assistance, including food, fuel and medical aid is freely and rapidly delivered into, and distributed within Gaza. The Presidency calls on Israel to fully and immediately reopen its border crossings with Gaza to help alleviate the suffering of Gaza’s population.

The Presidency shares Israel’s concerns over arms smuggling into Gaza and welcomes US and Egyptian efforts to find a lasting solution to this issue.

The recent crisis in Gaza only highlights the need for renewed and urgent efforts in achieving a comprehensive peacDobye. The EU stands ready to help establish an independent, democratic, contiguous and viable Palestinian state, living side by side with Israel in peace and security. The Presidency calls on Israel and the PA to resume their discussions and emphasises the importance of the Arab Peace initiative as a major element in moving the peace process forward.

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