The president of the Spanish government, Pedro Sánchez, yesterday insisted on defending the two-state solution -Israel and Palestine- to solve the conflict in the region, during his speech at the summit held in Cairo, which was attended by representatives of Arab and European governments, but not the United States and Israel.
The summit was convened by Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi to try to halt Israel’s war with the Hamas terrorist group, which is causing a severe humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip.
The meeting was attended by the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres; the President of the European Council, Charles Michel; the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs, Josep Borrell; the head of the Spanish Executive, who holds the Presidency of the Council of the EU for this six-month period; King Abdullah II of Jordan, the emir of Qatar, Tamin bin Hamad al-Thani, the Turkish president, Tayyip Erdogan, the prime ministers of Italy and Greece, Georgia Meloni and Kyriakos Mitsoakis, and the foreign ministers of Germany, Annalena Baerbock, France, Catherine Colonna, and the United Kingdom, James Cleverly, among other leaders.
However, there were no representatives from the United States, Israel or Iran, which many analysts consider to be Hamas’s main supporter. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas was present.
The different positions that emerged during the speeches of the various leaders showed that it was impossible to reach any conclusions, beyond the expression of the desire to put an end to the conflict and to avoid the suffering of the civilian population.
In this sense, Antonio Guterres called for a “humanitarian ceasefire”, which would allow aid to reach the civilian population, an idea that Pedro Sánchez supported in his speech, calling for “courageous” action by the international community. What we need today,” he stressed, “is to protect all civilians. I repeat, protect all civilians: those who are being held hostage (by Hamas) and who need to be returned to their families and those who are suffering the horror in Gaza”.
According to the President of the Government, “the only way” to achieve this is “through more humanitarian aid and a humanitarian ceasefire” together with the “effort” of the international community to “lay the foundations for two States, Israel and Palestine, which respect each other and coexist in security and peace”.
In this sense, he called for “seizing every opportunity to promote dialogue and peace” at this “critical” moment that has the world “shocked by the spiral of violence and bloodshed”.
Sánchez, who is one of the European leaders who has not travelled to Israel, repeated the condemnation he has shown from the outset of “the terrorist attacks perpetrated against Israel” and the recognition of that country’s right to “defend itself in strict compliance with international law and international humanitarian law”.
The head of the Spanish government insisted on calling on Hamas to release all the hostages “immediately and unconditionally” and warned that the conflict must be prevented from turning into a “regional crisis”.
Sánchez held a bilateral meeting with Mahmoud Abbas, to whom he conveyed his “support and solidarity with the suffering of the people in Gaza”, as he indicated in a message on the social network X, which accompanied the video of the moment of the meeting. In the same message, he said that Spain “will increase humanitarian aid and cooperation with Palestine”, something that the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Josá Manuel Albares, had already announced a few days earlier.
Albares, who accompanied Sánchez to the Cairo summit, celebrated, also in a message from X, the entry of the first trucks of humanitarian aid into the Gaza Strip and called for basic services such as water and electricity to be guaranteed for the enclave’s population.