French President Emmanuel Macron has urged Israel to stop killing women and babies in Gaza.
The politician says there is “no justification” for bombing the region and even went as far as saying a ceasefire would be in Israel’s best interest. In an interview with the BBC, Macron acknowledged Israel’s right to defend itself after the surprise attack from Hamas over a month ago.
He also stressed that France “clearly condemns” the “terrorist” actions of Hamas. France – along with countries such as the UK and US – considers Hamas a terrorist group.
Macron now hopes other world leaders will join his calls for a ceasefire. He says the “clear conclusion” at the moment is that there is “no other solution” than a humanitarian pause in the conflict following a ceasefire to stop further civilian casualties.
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He said: “De facto – today, civilians are bombed – de facto. These babies, these ladies, these old people are bombed and killed. So there is no reason for that and no legitimacy. So we do urge Israel to stop.”
Macron also said it was no his place to judge whether any international laws had been broken during the fighting.
He added: “We do share [Israel’s] pain. And we do share their willingness to get rid of terrorism. We know what terrorism means in France.
“It’s extremely important for all of us because of our principles, because we are democracies. It’s important for the mid-to-long run as well for the security of Israel itself, to recognise that all lives matter.”
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The Gaza Health Ministry, which is run by Hamas, now claims over 11,000 people have been killed since the October 7 attacks. It says over 1.5 million people have fled their homes.
With the conflict raging on, Israel has said it will pause military activity for four hours a day so people can leave the northern region. It comes as the United Nations said the amount of aid entering Gaza was”a fraction” of what was needed.
Speaking to the BBC, the French President also called on his nation to condemn antisemitic acts “without ambiguity”. He said the French needed to be united against antisemitism while “sharing the pain or the compassion of Palestinians”.
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