Middle East

Baerbock: Gaza ceasefire should act be bridge to political process

27.11.2023, 14:35

The temporary ceasefire between Israel and Hamas should be used as a bridge for a political process aimed at finding a lasting solution to the conflict, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said.

"The central thing we are currently struggling for is to see the suffering of others. Because only when the suffering of others can be healed will our own suffering end. Israelis can only live in safety if Palestinians live in safety," she told a meeting of the Union for the Mediterranean in Barcelona, Spain.

The meeting of 27 foreign ministers from the 43 member states of the Union for the Mediterranean was also attended by EU foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell, who emphasized the need for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

"There will be no peace or security for Israel without a Palestinian state," Borrell said.

Israel is not partaking in the meeting. Relations with Spain were strained after Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez' statements about civilian casualties caused by Israel's military at the Rafah border crossing prompted the Israeli government to summon the Spanish ambassador and accuse Sánchez of supporting Hamas terror.

Baerbock addressed the issue of Israel's absence in Barcelona.

She said that the country was not taking part because it had feared "one-sided hostility" at the meeting.