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Michel slams al-Rantissi killing

19 April 2004

BRUSSELS – Belgian Foreign Minister Louis Michel has added his voice to the anger expressed by most of the international community at Israel’s assassination of Hamas leader Abdel Aziz al-Rantissi.

In a statement issued on Sunday Michel said he unreservedly condemned Israel’s action.

“I definitively condemn extra-judicial killings. The only result they will have is to reinforce the most radical elements [in the conflict] and to make the current antagonisms even worse,” he said.

The statement added that Israel’s action was “inadmissible” and “gravely complicated” efforts to re-start the Middle East peace process.

An Israeli helicopter gunship killed al-Rantissi by firing rockets at his car on Saturday night. The attack came three weeks after Israel killed Rantisi’s predecessor as Hamas leader, the wheelchair-bound Sheikh Yassin, in a similar attack.

The European Union roundly condemned the attack on al-Rantissi as did the Arab world and the majority of United Nations member countries.

Neither the United States’ government nor Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry have overtly condemned Israel however.

[Copyright Expatica.com 2004]

Subject: Belgian news