The diplomatic standoff between Spain and Israel has risen to an alarming level following the contentious remarks by Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez. Sánchez declared his profound doubts about Israel's adherence to international humanitarian law and denounced what he termed the indiscriminate killing of Palestinians by Israel during its military maneuvers in Gaza.
Israel's Response to Sánchez's Comments
Israel, in a counter-reaction, has withdrawn its ambassador to Spain for consultations. This diplomatic rift trails the recent assault on Israel by Hamas, resulting in Israel's retaliatory strikes that the Hamas-run health ministry claims have killed over 15,000 Palestinians. The left-wing government of Sánchez, which includes pro-independence Catalans, has persistently criticized Israel's actions and promoted recognition of a Palestinian state.
Criticism from Israel and Domestic Backlash
Both Sánchez and Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo have been reproached by Israel for not fully attributing responsibility to Hamas for the violence. Sánchez's stance has drawn domestic criticism amidst Spain's current EU presidency. The Spanish Foreign Minister has also rebuffed Israeli accusations and summoned Israel's ambassador.
Release of US-Israeli Citizens Amidst the Conflict
Amidst the turmoil, two dual US-Israeli citizens have been freed following a Qatari-mediated ceasefire in Gaza. The crisis marks a severe diplomatic measure, often preceding the potential severing of diplomatic ties. The recall of an ambassador for consultation is one of the sternest warnings in diplomacy and signifies that the diplomatic mission will remain vacant indefinitely. The situation remains fluid as diplomatic tensions escalate between the two nations.