Wednesday, December 17, 2014 12:21 pm
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday demanded the EU immediately restore Hamas to its terrorism blacklist, after a European court ordered the Palestinian Islamist group’s removal.
“We are not satisfied with the European explanation by which Hamas has been withdrawn from this list. We expect the Europeans to puts Hamas back on the list immediately,” Netanyahu said in a statement.
In contrast, Hamas hailed the European court decision, describing the move as a “victory”.
“This is a victory for the Palestinian question and for the rights of our people,” Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhum told AFP.
“We thank the European court for this positive decision which must be followed by international steps to lift the oppression of the Palestinian people.”
The General Court of the European Union ruled Wednesday that the original listing of Hamas in 2001 was based not on sound legal judgements but on conclusions derived from the media and the Internet.
But it stressed that the decision to remove Hamas was based on technical grounds and does “not imply any substantive assessment of the question of the classification of Hamas as a terrorist group”.
Hamas, which has been in power in the Palestinian territory of Gaza since 2007, had appealed against its inclusion on the blacklist on several grounds.