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Date posted: June 01, 2010
By European Parliament

The President of the European Parliament, Jerzy Buzek, together with the MEPs who visited Gaza at the end of last week as part of an official EP fact-finding delegation* led by Eva Joly, Chairwoman of the Committee on Development, are deeply shocked by the disproportionate action taken by the Israeli authorities and strongly condemn the attack on six boats bringing essential humanitarian supplies to the Gaza Strip.

President Buzek said:

"Despite repeated calls for all involved to act with restraint and responsibility, the interception of the convoy in international waters has resulted in many casualties. This is an unjustified attack, which has claimed at least a dozen lives. The European Parliament sends its condolences to the families and close ones of all those who lost their lives and hope for a speedy recovery of those injured.

It is a clear and unacceptable breach of international law, especially the fourth Geneva Convention. We demand that Israel explains its actions immediately, with the utmost transparency, and guarantees full accountability by co-operating with any full inquiry that is to be set up.

The European Parliament also urges High Representative Ashton to take steps within the Quartet to force Israel to lift the siege on the people of Gaza immediately and unconditionally. We cannot stand by while 80% of the Gazan population is living below the poverty line.

The European Parliament has always strongly condemned the continued policy of closure with respect to the Gaza Strip, seeing it as unacceptable and counterproductive."

Note to editors:

MEPs who took part in the delegation to Gaza last week

Eva JOLY (Chair, Development Committee, Greens/EFA, FR)
Michle STRIFFLER (Vice Chair Development Committee, EPP, FR)
Ivailo KALFIN (Vice Chair Budgets Committee, S&D, BG)
Lajos BOKROS (Budgets Committee, ECR, HU)
Vronique DE KEYSER (Foreign Affairs Committee, S&D, BE)
Marielle DE SARNEZ (Foreign Affairs Committee, ALDE, FR)
G?ran F?RM (Budgets Committee, S&D, SE)
Nicole KIIL-NIELSEN (Foreign Affairs Committee, Greens/EFA, FR)
Ivo VAJGL (Development Committee, ALDE, SL)

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