Estonia can choose side easy as Israel is our partner and Hamas is a religious fundamentalist terrorist organization, said MEP Sven Mikser (SDE), but this does not take away Israel's obligation to respect international humanitarian law. Estonia has consistently supported the two-state solution in regard to Palestinian state, he explained.
"People who unequivocally denounce an abhorrent and violent terrorist attack have no justification to downplay the suffering endured by the Palestinian people and the loss of life among civilians during the Israeli military operation. And vice versa – people who demand Israel to adhere to international humanitarian law are inevitably undermining the horrific acts committed by Hamas," Mikser told "Terevision" on Tuesday.
Asked about Estonia's official position on the Palestinian state, Mikser replied that Estonia has consistently supported the two-state solution.
We have not seen an alternative that is somehow rationally convincing on the one hand and morally just on the other. The people of Israel must be able to live in safety without worrying about being hit by rockets from Gaza or Lebanon fired in their direction by Hezbollah. On the other hand, the millions of Palestinians who have lived in their homes for centuries, whether in the West Bank or in Gaza, they too deserve to have their own independent state. Of course, a country that does not threaten its neighbors on a daily basis.
Mikser also said that Russia was taking advantage of the situation to draw attention away from Ukraine and to win over countries that have so far not clearly chosen its side, but that Russia's role should not be overemphasized.
Mikser said that there are anti-Semitic manifestations in European countries and it is worth looking not only at Iran, but also at the development in European societies.
He added that it is not very difficult for Estonia to choose a side because Israel, despite not being a NATO ally and not a European Union country, is a very close partner. "We share common allies with Israel – the United States is the biggest ally and the biggest security guarantee for both Israel and Estonia – and we have nothing to do with Hamas, a religious fundamentalist terrorist organization. So choosing sides on this issue is simple and obvious."
Mikser added that Estonia continues to support Israel's right to protect its people, which is also an obligation for the Israeli government. "But this does not take away Israel's obligation to respect international humanitarian law and to minimize human casualties, civilian casualties," the Estonian MEP said.
Editor: Kristina Kersa