Parliament has condemned Hamas’ attacks against Israel while expressing serious concern over the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip. In the resolution adopted in October 2023 with 500 votes in favour, 21 against and 24 abstentions, MEPs strongly condemn the brutal attacks, express their support to Israel and its people and underline the need to “eliminate the terrorist organisation Hamas” .
They also call for the immediate release of all hostages kidnapped by Hamas and recognise Israel’s right to self-defence “as enshrined in and constrained by international law” . As such, any actions by Israel must strictly comply with international humanitarian law, the text states.
Parliament also stresses that both the attacks by Hamas and the Israeli response risk reinforcing a cycle of violence in the region. MEPs therefore call for a “humanitarian pause” of the fighting and stress that attacking civilians and civilian infrastructure, including UN workers, medical workers and journalists, is a serious violation of international law.
Following Hamas’ deadly attack against Israel on 7 October 2023, which claimed the lives of around 1 200 people and resulted in more than 200 people being taken hostage, Israel declared war against the terrorist group. It began striking the Gaza Strip from the air, later sending ground forces into the sealed-off coastal enclave. According to the Hamas-run health ministry, more than 14 000 Palestinians have so far been killed.
EP President Metsola visited Israel on Friday 13 October to express solidarity with the victims of the Hamas terrorist attacks, and meet with Israeli leadership. The EP held a solemn ceremony on 11 October in solidarity with victims of the attacks.
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