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EU foreign policy chief suggests US halt arms shipments to Israel

"Everybody goes to Tel Aviv begging, but Netanyahu doesn't listen to anyone" said E.U. High Representative for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell.

European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell arrives at the E.U. headquarters in Brussels for a summit, June 29, 2023. Credit: Alexandros Michailidis/Shutterstock.
European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell arrives at the E.U. headquarters in Brussels for a summit, June 29, 2023. Credit: Alexandros Michailidis/Shutterstock.

European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell on Monday suggested that the United States and other countries halt weapons shipments to Israel over allegations that “too many people are being killed” in the war against Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

Borrell’s remarks came against the backdrop of U.S. President Joe Biden’s characterization of Israel’s operation as being “over the top” and Western diplomats accusing the Jewish state of using excessive force.

“Look, I don’t pretend to be in charge of the foreign policy of the U.S.; I have enough with the foreign policy of the European Union,” Borrell told reporters after a meeting of E.U. aid ministers in Brussels.

“If you believe that too many people are being killed, maybe you should provide less arms in order to prevent so many people being killed. Isn’t that logical?” he continued.

“Everybody goes to Tel Aviv begging: Please don’t do that, protect civilians, don’t kill so many. … But Netanyahu doesn’t listen [to] anyone,” charged Borrell. “They are going to evacuate [civilians from Rafah]. Where? To the moon?”

So if the international community believes that this is a slaughter … maybe they have to think about the provision of arms,” concluded the diplomat, exclaiming: “Stop saying please and doing something!”

Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz, responding to Borrell’s comments, said, “Minister Borrell, you don’t want to listen to anyone. We clarified and will clarify again. Israel acts according to the international laws of war and allows the Gazans to reach safe areas.

“In fact, Israel cares more about the residents of Gaza than Hamas does. They prevent them from leaving. We permit it,” he said, adding that “the calls to prevent Israel from having weapons are actually calls to prevent Israel from destroying Hamas. It will not happen. We will destroy Hamas.”

Following a tour last year of Kibbutz Be’eri, where Hamas terrorists butchered more than 100 people during their Oct. 7 terror assault on Israel, Borrell implored the Jewish state “not to be consumed by rage.”

“One horror does not justify another. … I think that is what the best friends of Israel can tell you,” said the E.U. foreign policy chief, speaking at a press conference alongside Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen.

Last month, Borrell demanded that the international community impose a “solution” to the conflict between Israel and Palestinian terrorists in Judea, Samaria and the Gaza Strip.

“What we have learned over the last 30 years, and what we are learning now with the tragedy experienced in Gaza, is that the solution must be imposed from outside,” he said.

“Peace will only be achieved in a lasting manner if the international community gets involved intensely to achieve it and imposes a solution,” he added, referring to the United States, Europe and Arab countries.

In October, Borrell slammed Israel’s response to Hamas and appeared to call for a ceasefire, leading to criticism from E.U. foreign ministers.

In 2019, while serving as Spain’s foreign minister, Borrell admitted to participating in an antisemitic rally as a child in the 1950s, according to the El Confidencial website. Armed with noisemakers, the diplomat joined in shouts of “Kill Jews,” he told a Holocaust memorial service.

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