Monday, May 31, 2010
EU demands inquiry into Israeli raid
Hours after the Israeli military attacked a Gaza-bound aid convoy, the European Union Foreign Policy chief calls for a full inquiry into the deaths of those on board the flotilla.
A spokesperson for the EU Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton expressed her regret on the loss of lives and use of violence as the news of Israel's attack on the Freedom Flotilla shook the world on Monday.
"On behalf of the European Union she demands a full inquiry about the circumstances in which this happened ... She calls for an immediate, sustained and unconditional opening of the crossing for the flow of humanitarian aid, commercial goods and persons to and from Gaza," Reuters reported the EU official as saying.
The condemnation came after Israeli forces launched an early morning attack on the international aid fleet en route to the besieged Gaza Strip.
According to the al-Aqsa TV channel, at least 20 people were killed in the attack and more than 50 others were wounded. Nine Turkish nationals were reportedly among those dead.
Amid public outrage over the Israeli act of violence, the Arab League, Turkey, and Iran were among the first to condemn the attack.
Palestine's democratically elected Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh also called on Arab leaders to take practical steps to end the siege on Gaza Strip.
Meanwhile, as part of a global reaction to the deadly attack, Turkey, Sweden, Greece, and Spain summoned Israeli envoys to Ankara, Stockholm, Athens, and Madrid.