As part of the international diplomatic fallout following the Israeli action on a humanitarian aid convoy off the Gaza Strip, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, at a meeting in Geneva, added her formal reaction.
Pillay said: “Today I am also registering my shock at reports that humanitarian aid was met with violence early this morning, reportedly causing death and injury as the boat convoy approached the Gaza coast.”
Spain, which currently holds the rotating EU presidency, also condemned the Israeli action. Madrid called the operation “unacceptable”, and summoned Israel’s ambassador. France, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Austria and Greece also summoned the heads of Israeli diplomatic missions in their capitals.
French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner said: “It is an incident that happened in a completely unacceptable way in international waters. We really have to wait for details but our condemnation has been firm and will continue to be.”
The European Union foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton demanded that Israel mount a “full inquiry”. Ashton, speaking in the context of personally having visited Gaza pointed out: “…the importance of opening the crossings for humanitarian aid to go through to ensure that ordinary people have a better existence than that which I saw.”