After their visit to Egypt.. Do European Union leaders agree on a unified position towards Gaza?
The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) reported that after senior European Union leaders met with President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi in Egypt, they may be able to agree on a united front regarding the Israeli aggression on Gaza during their meeting on Thursday, as the war between Israel and the Palestinians dominates the country. the top.
Variation in the European position on the Israeli aggression on Gaza
She continued that for weeks, the European Union’s position on the war has been surrounded by conflicting messages, diplomatic missteps, and conflicting national views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but after days of disagreement, European Union leaders aim to form a united front, and are expected to support the call to stop the fighting on humanitarian grounds. This came after a quick visit recently made by most members of the European bloc to Egypt and a number of Arab capitals.
European Council President Charles Michel said the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Gaza was a source of grave concern, and that leaders were keen to facilitate access to food, water, medical care, fuel and shelter.
The British Radio added that European leaders hope that this will create safer conditions for the release of more than 200 detainees held by Hamas, and many of the prisoners are dual European citizens, including citizens of Germany, France, Portugal and the Netherlands.
She pointed out that the member states of the European Union have sharply differing views, and all of this leads to a very confusing picture, as some have reservations about calling for a halt to the fighting, and they say that this could be seen as limiting Israel’s right to self-defense. Especially Germany, which is the only country that does not support a humanitarian truce.
What is needed instead are shorter breaks in the fighting, an EU diplomat said, adding: “A pause means a permanent ceasefire, while temporary pauses, short periods of a few hours, to get aid are what some are aiming for.”
The British Radio explained that Germany, Austria, Hungary and the Czech Republic have strong positions in support of Israel, while Spain and Ireland are more in line with the Palestinian issue.
She added that the quasi-agreement comes after a diplomatic tour undertaken by several European leaders in the Middle East, where Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, and French President Emmanuel Macron held talks with President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi.
European criticism of absolute support for Israel
The British Radio confirmed that the European Union is the largest donor to the Palestinians, so when Oliver Varhelyi, the Hungarian European Commissioner responsible for policy towards neighboring countries, announced, after the Al-Aqsa Flood operation, the suspension of all payments and the postponement of all new budget proposals, a wave of anger erupted from aid agencies.
She added that the European Commission quickly issued a statement in which it said that the aid amounting to 691 million euros (600 million pounds sterling) would not be stopped, but would be placed under review, and it later said that it would triple the aid provided to the Palestinians.
She added that when the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, traveled to Israel with the President of the European Parliament, she sparked criticism for supporting Israel’s right to defend itself, without emphasizing its obligation to adhere to international humanitarian law, and there appears to be no effort to communicate with the Palestinian Authority.
An EU diplomat told reporters that not everything von der Leyen said in Israel was posted on social media, adding: “If you want to be effective, don’t use megaphone diplomacy. The Israeli government listens to us if we put something up behind closed doors.” .
The British Radio continued that in a highly unusual move, more than 800 European Union employees and diplomats signed an open letter criticizing its “uncontrolled” support for Israel, and complained of the “double standards” followed by the committee, noting that the blockade imposed by Russia on… Ukraine was seen as an act of terrorism, while the Israeli blockade of Gaza was “completely ignored”.
“The EU’s response has been very unfortunate and confusing,” said James Moran of the Center for European Policy Studies, adding: “In the past, the EU’s approach to conflicts in the Middle East has generally managed to come out with a balanced position. For example, in 2014, it was… “Calls were issued very quickly for a ceasefire.”