Creating new perspectives since 2009

Norway accuses West of double standards on Gaza

April 29, 2024 at 4:48 pm

Norway’s Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide speaks during a press conference following a meeting of foreign ministers from 14 countries from the Middle East, the Nordics and the Benelux on the situation in the Gaza Strip, on December 15, 2023 in Oslo, Norway. [STIAN LYSBERG SOLUM/NTB/AFP via Getty Images]

Norway’s Foreign Minister, Espen Barth Eide, on Monday accused the Western countries of double standards on the second day of the World Economic Forum held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Anadolu Agency reports.

With brutal war unravelling in Gaza and Ukraine, the Foreign Minister argued that the West’s support for the war-torn European country, inherent in terms of respect for international law, has been absent when it comes to violations of international law in Gaza.

“Many Western countries hesitated to use the same type of language against violations of international humanitarian law, for instance, that we easily apply when they are violated by Russia in Ukraine,” Eide said.

The special meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) which began on Sunday is taking place amid the ongoing brutal Israeli war on Gaza in which more than 34,000 Palestinians were killed, mostly women and children, while tens of thousands are injured, missing, or uncounted for, according to the Gaza Health Ministry.

OPINION: Gaza truce or Rafah assault? Netanyahu faces political dilemma

Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister, Faisal Bin Farhan, described the situation in the Gaza Strip as a “catastrophe” at the meeting, adding that talking about half-measures in the Gaza Strip is “ridiculous”, and that the focus should be on the two-state solution.

The Gaza Strip will take 30 years to be rebuilt after the Israeli war, he said, while also pointing out that a UN report has suggested that it will take 14 years just to remove the rubble.

“The (Israeli) plans to expand military operations towards Rafah will only bring more suffering to the targeted and defenceless civilians in the Gaza Strip. The situation in Gaza is obviously a catastrophe by every measure,” Bin Farhan warned.

Over seven months into the onslaught, which came after Palestinian group, Hamas, launched a surprise attack that Israel said killed 1,200 people, vast swathes of Gaza lay in ruins, pushing 85 per cent of the enclave’s population into internal displacement amid a crippling blockade of most food, clean water, and medicine, according to the UN.

However, since then, it has been revealed by Haaretz that helicopters and tanks of the Israeli army had, in fact, killed many of the 1,139 soldiers and civilians claimed by Israel to have been killed by the Palestinian Resistance.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice.

READ: Egypt: Gaza truce proposal ignites discord within Israeli cabinet