UK's Cameron urges Israel to take more 'surgical' approach to Hamas

AFP , Tuesday 19 Dec 2023

British Foreign Secretary David Cameron on Tuesday urged Israel to take a "much more surgical, clinical and targeted approach" in dealing with Hamas.

British Foreign Minister David Cameron
British Foreign Minister David Cameron delivers his speech during a press point with Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani as part of the XVI Italian Ambassadors Conference, in Rome, AP


After talks with his Italian counterpart in Rome, Cameron said Britain was asking Israel to "recognise that they have to minimise civilian casualties, they have to obey international humanitarian law at all times".

He noted that, according to the Israelis, there had been fewer civilian casualties in the south of Gaza than in the north.

"I would urge them still to go further," the former premier told reporters.

"We want to see a much more surgical, clinical and targeted approach when it comes to dealing with Hamas."

Cameron and his German counterpart Annalena Baerbock wrote a joint article on Sunday calling for a "sustainable ceasefire" in Gaza and said that "too many civilians have been killed" in the war.

Asked what a sustainable ceasefire meant, he said Tuesday that stopping the fighting was "not sustainable if you stop permanently and Hamas are left in control of even one part of Gaza".

He said a ceasefire and a two-state solution "cannot go together".

"You cannot expect the Israelis to have a two-state solution with Hamas in control of one part of what would be Palestine," Cameron said.

"A sustainable solution means that Hamas are no longer a threat to Israel, they are not capable of doing what they did on October 7."

Hamas-led Al-Aqsa Flood Operation on October 7, killing around 1,140 people in Israel, and capturing about 250, according to Israeli officials.

Since then, Israel's bombardment of the Gaza Strip has devastated large swathes of the coastal territory, and left at least 19,667 people dead, 70% of them women and children, with 52,586 people wounded, according to the Palestinian health ministry's latest figures.

* This story was edited by Ahram Online. 

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