Updated December 29th, 2023 at 18:27 IST

'Deeply concerned': Macron urges Netanyahu to establish 'lasting ceasefire' in Gaza

French President Emmanuel Macron urged Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for a “lasting” and “durable” ceasefire in the ongoing Israel-Hamas war.

Reported by: Bhagyasree Sengupta
French President Emmanuel Macron and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu | Image:AP

Paris: In a telephonic conversation, French President Emmanuel Macron urged Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for a “lasting” and “durable” ceasefire in the ongoing Israel-Hamas war. While speaking to Netanyahu on Wednesday evening, the French leader insisted that both sides need to work on lasting peace with the help of regional and international partners, The Times of Israel reported. The French leader also assured that the country will work with Jordan in days ahead on humanitarian operations in Gaza. 

“France will work in the coming days in cooperation with Jordan to carry out humanitarian operations in Gaza,” the French presidency quoted Macron in a statement. Macron told Netanyahu that he is “deeply concerned” about civilian deaths and the humanitarian emergency in Gaza. He also emphasised the importance of measures to end violence by Israeli settlers against Palestinian civilians in the occupied West Bank and insisted that any plans for the establishment of new settlements should be prevented. 


Meanwhile, the office of Prime Minister Netanyahu also shared a statement on the phone call in which they maintained that the Israeli premier thanked Macron for France's involvement in “defending freedom”. “Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke this evening with French President Emmanuel Macron and thanked him for France's involvement in defending freedom of navigation and its willingness to help restore security along Israel's border with Lebanon,” the Israeli PMO wrote on X, formally known as Twitter. “The Prime Minister updated the French President on developments in the war to destroy Hamas in Gaza, as well as the effort to bring about the release of the hostages, and asked him to continue working for their release,” the office furthered. 

Netanyahu gives some assurance

In a subsequent tweet, Netanyahu's office mentioned that the Israeli leader assured Macron that the Jewish nation is “determined to work" in every way possible to ensure that Gazans residing in both north and south return to their homes. “Prime Minister Netanyahu made it clear that the people and Government of Israel are determined to work in every way to return the residents of the north and south to their homes,” the statement from the office reads. Macron's phone call came hours after the World Health Organisation noted that the population in Gaza is in “grave peril”, citing acute hunger and desperation throughout the war-torn coastal enclave. “I urge the international community to take urgent steps to alleviate the grave peril facing the population of Gaza and jeopardizing the ability of humanitarian workers to help people with terrible injuries, acute hunger, and at severe risk of disease,” WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus averred. 


In a separate statement, the international body claimed that hungry people stopped their convoy with hopes for food. “WHO’s ability to supply medicines, medical supplies, and fuel to hospitals is being increasingly constrained by the hunger and desperation of people en route to, and within, hospitals we reach," the international body exclaimed.  


Published December 28th, 2023 at 08:54 IST