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EU Agencies

EU Invites Israeli and Palestinian Ministers: Diplomacy Talks

The heads of Israeli diplomacy, Eli Cohen, and Palestinian diplomacy, Riyad al-Maliki, were invited to participate on Tuesday in an emergency meeting of European foreign ministers convened after the Hamas attack on Israel, announced EU.

The announcement was made on X (formerly Twitter) by the head of European diplomacy Josep Borrell, from Muscat, the capital of the Sultanate of Oman, where he is with several European ministers.

He called a meeting to be held Tuesday afternoon in a hybrid format.

The two ministers accepted Mr. Borrell’s invitation, his services clarified.

On Saturday, the European Union “unequivocally” condemned the attacks by the Islamist movement Hamas and stressed that Israel had “the right to defend itself”. The EU also called for the release of civilians taken hostage in violation of international law.

On Tuesday, Mr. Borrell indicated on X that he had reiterated this condemnation during a conversation Monday evening with the Iranian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian.

“Nothing can justify such despicable terrorist acts and nothing can justify supporting them,” he added.

The head of European diplomacy is due to meet in Muscat with the member countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council, before meeting with European ministers.

The EU also announced on Monday that it would carry out a review of its development aid program for the Palestinians, specifying that humanitarian aid was not affected.

Several European capitals expressed their concern on Monday, after the announcement by European Commissioner Oliver Varhelyi that the EU was suspending its aid.

A Commission spokesperson clarified on Tuesday on this subject that no payments would be interrupted while this review was in progress.

The EU, the main financial supporter of the Palestinians, plans to spend some 1.2 billion euros between 2021 and 2024 to finance projects, particularly in education and health.

This article is originally published on lesoir.be

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