Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen accused Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and the Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo of “supporting terrorism.”
During their visits to Israel, Palestine, and Egypt, the leaders of Spain and Belgium repeatedly called for the protection of the civilian population in Gaza and for Israel to respect international humanitarian law.
After a press conference at the Rafah crossing in Egypt, where the Spanish Prime Minister said that Madrid is open to unilaterally recognize the state of Palestine, although that does not coincide with the opinion of the European Union (EU), the head of Israeli diplomacy ordered the summoning of the Spanish and Belgian ambassadors in Tel Aviv.
“We condemn the false claims of the Prime Ministers of Spain and Belgium who are giving support to terrorism,” he announced on the social media X, defending that Israel is “acting according to international law.”
While the Belgian leader was more reserved at the conference, Sanchez said Israel was not respecting international law and accused it of “indiscriminately killing thousands of children” in Gaza.
Furthermore, Sanchez also strongly condemned the October 7th attack by Hamas.
“Violence will only lead to more violence. We must replace violence with hope and peace. That’s what I told the Israeli president and prime minister,” Sanchez said at the Rafah border crossing.
Speaking about whether Belgium would recognize Palestine, De Croo said the first priority was to free the hostages held by Hamas and help alleviate the humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip.
”Then, we will need to sit around the table and discuss the subject,” said De Croo.
Currently, nine of the 27 EU member states recognize the state of Palestine. In 2014, Sweden became the first EU member state to do so.