Palestinian leader tells Macron to stop Israel 'aggression' on Gaza

AFP , Tuesday 24 Oct 2023

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas told France's Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday that the international community must halt Israel's "aggression" as it battles Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

Emmanuel Macron
File Photo: French President Emmanuel Macron (L) meets with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on October 24, 2023. AFP


"We urge you, President Macron, to stop this aggression," Abbas said after the two leaders held talks in Ramallah dominated by the war that has left thousands of civilians dead in Gaza and Israel.

The Palestinian leader strongly condemned Israeli air strikes which he said "kill innocent civilians in a barbaric way".

Abbas said Israel "and the countries that support it are responsible for the conflict". He added that there should be an "international peace conference" on Gaza.

Macron told reporters that "nothing can justify" the suffering of civilians in the Palestinian territory since the October 7 attacks on Israel.

Earlier in Jerusalem, Macron defended Israel's right to defend itself against Hamas.

The first Western leader to go to the Palestinian Authority's headquarters in the occupied West Bank during the current crisis, Macron said: "There will not be any sustainable peace if there is no recognition of the legitimate right of the Palestinian people to have territory and a state.

"There will be no sustainable peace if there is no clear recognition by the Palestinian people and their authorities of an Israeli state and the importance of its existence and its security," he added.

Israel says that 1,400 people were killed when Hamas gunmen crossed into southern Israel on October 7. The Palestinian health ministry says that 5,791 people, including more than 2,000 children and 1,400 women, have died in Israel's air raids.

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