MADRID (The Thursday Times) — Spain’s acting Minister of Social Rights and Agenda 2030, Ione Belarra, has articulated a strong stance towards the ongoing conflict in Gaza, calling for concrete actions against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
In a series of public statements, Ms. Belarra urged the Spanish coalition government to petition the International Criminal Court (ICC) to initiate a war crimes investigation into Mr. Netanyahu, primarily citing the relentless aerial bombardment of the Gaza Strip which has had catastrophic impacts on the region. An Israeli-origin airstrike on October 17 targeted a Baptist hospital and UN-operated school in Gaza City, which killed over 500 Palestinians.
Furthermore, Ms. Belarra has requested the suspension of diplomatic relations between Spain and Israel. The minister, also the leader of Spain’s left-wing Podemos party, referred to the actions of Israeli forces as a “planned genocide” of the Palestinian populace, indicating a notable shift towards a more assertive Spanish foreign policy on Israel and displaying a heightened concern over the humanitarian situation in Gaza.
Adding to her appeal, Ms. Belarra announced plans to request the PSOE (Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party) that the government “urgently” impose economic sanctions on Israel, intending to apply further pressure and address the crisis in Gaza through economic channels.