Iran, EU call for swift cessation of Gaza conflict
Monday, 04 December, 2023, 21:18
Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian and EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell have highlighted the necessity to end the conflict in the Gaza Strip as soon as possible.
In a phone call on Saturday, the two sides discussed the latest developments in Gaza as well as cooperation between Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), according to a statement published on the Iranian Foreign Ministry's website on Sunday.
The Iranian foreign minister stressed the need to stop the Israeli "crimes" against Palestinians, noting that it was necessary to immediately end Israel's military attacks against people in Gaza and prepare the ground for the delivery of more humanitarian aid to the coastal enclave.
He warned of Israel's "plot" and move to forcefully displace the Palestinian people from their land, and an expansion of the conflict in the region if the Israeli attacks were not stopped.
Amir-Abdollahian blamed the "U.S. support as the main factor encouraging Israel to continue its military aggression against and killing of civilians in Gaza," stressing that Washington's policies in support of Israel also played an important role in prolonging and expanding the conflict.
He pointed to Iran's cooperation with the IAEA, saying it would continue within technical and legal frameworks.
The EU foreign policy chief, for his part, emphasized the need to reduce tensions in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank as soon as possible, stressing that the EU was making efforts to make Israel committed to respecting international law.
He underlined Iran's role in helping ease tensions in the region, saying "we also believe that the solution to Palestine's issue is focusing on the diplomatic path and the continuation of the military attacks will only exacerbate the tensions."
Borrell expressed hope that the constructive cooperation between Iran and the IAEA would continue.
On Oct. 7, Hamas launched a surprise attack on Israel, firing thousands of rockets and infiltrating Israeli territory, while Israel responded with airstrikes, ground operations and punitive measures that included a siege on the Gaza Strip.
More than 15,000 people have been killed in Gaza since the beginning of the conflict, with 75 percent of them being children, women and the elderly, according to the Gaza-based Health Ministry. Israeli authorities said about 1,200 people were killed on the Israeli side, mostly during the Hamas surprise attack.
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