EU diplomacy chief urges 'long lasting' Gaza truce

EU diplomacy chief urges 'long lasting' Gaza truce

The EU's top foreign policy official Josep Borrell called for an extension of the truce in the Gaza Strip, which is due to end on Tuesday.


The four-day pause has seen tearful reunions of families and hostages, released in exchange for dozens of Palestinian prisoners, in the first relief in the seven-week war.

The truce between Israel and Hamas entered its final 24 hours on Monday.

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"The pause should be extended to make it sustainable and long lasting while working for a political solution," he said on Monday in Barcelona, at the start of a meeting of the intergovernmental organisation Union for the Mediterranean.

Borrell called for a "political solution that should allow us to break the cycle of violence once and for all".

"Nothing can justify the indiscriminate brutality Hamas unleashed against civilians on seven of October," he said. "But one horror cannot justify another horror."

Militant group Hamas raided Israel on October 7 in the worst attack in the country's history, killing 1,200 people, mostly civilians, according to Israeli officials and taking some 240 people hostage.

In response, Israel launched a military campaign to destroy Hamas, killing nearly 15,000 people, mostly civilians and including thousands of children, according to Gaza's Hamas government.

Israel has faced mounting pressure to extend the pause mediated by Qatar, the United States and Egypt, though its leaders have dismissed any suggestions of a lasting halt to the offensive.

Hamas has signalled its willingness to extend the truce, with a source telling AFP the group told mediators they were open to prolonging it by "two to four days".


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