Hungary is the only EU member state not to support a joint statement on the conflict between Israel and Palestine, Euronews reports. Josep Borrell, Minister of Foreign Affairs for the European Union, reported on the informal emergency meeting of foreign ministers, which was concluded without consensus.
The European Union held an emergency meeting on the Israeli-Palestine conflict erupting into violence once again following Israeli police intervention in the Al-Aqsa mosque on Tuesday, which was then followed by the Palestinian militant group Hamas launching rockets at Israel.
Israel responded with a heavy bombing of the Gaza strip, which Josep Borrell described as “unacceptable,” as it had resulted in a “high number of civilian casualties.”
In his statement, Borrell said that while the European Union condemns rocket attacks by Hamas and supports Israel’s right to defend itself, “we have also considered and stated that this has to be done in a proportionate manner and respecting international humanitarian law.”
Borrell does not understand Hungary’s objection to the joint statement, the goal of it being “the immediate cessation of all violence and implementation of a ceasefire. The purpose is to protect civilians to give full humanitarian access in Gaza.”
Hungary Supports Israel, Condemns Rocket Attacks
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó told AFP news, “I have a general problem with the European statements on Israel (…) They are not of much help, especially in the current circumstances, when the tensions are so high.”
Kinga Gál, leader of Fidesz’s European Parliamentary delegation, voiced her full support for Israel, as “the rocket attacks launched on Israeli cities and their civilian population are firmly condemnable.”
Every rocket attack grows the uncertainty between the two sides, makes a solution to the conflict impossible, does not help the Palestine population, and continuously endangers regional security and stability.”
Gál brought up that peace and stability in the Middle East is the only thing that can stop “the mobilization of newer migrant waves.”
At least 212 Palestinians have been killed in airstrikes so far, 61 of them children, while 1,400 people have been wounded, according to Gaza’s Health Ministry. Ten people, among them a 5-year-old boy, have been killed in rocket attacks on the civilian areas of Israel.
Featured photo illustration by Balázs Szecsődi/MTI/Prime Minister’s Press Office