January 26, 2024
Taoiseach must clarify Fine Gael position on permanent ceasefire in Gaza – MacManus

Taoiseach must clarify Fine Gael position on permanent ceasefire in Gaza – MacManus

Sinn Féin MEP Chris MacManus has called on An Taoiseach to clarify his party’s position on a ceasefire in the war in Gaza. MacManus was speaking following the initial ruling of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on the South African case against Israel.  

MacManus hit out at the mixed messaging from Fine Gael after their MEPs voted in favour of an amendment in a European Parliament resolution last week calling for a ceasefire to be made conditional on the release of all Israeli hostages and that Hamas is “dismantled”.

MacManus said:

“Like everyone my heart breaks when I switch on the news and see the Gaza death toll rise and rise. It is quite clear to anyone that wants a peaceful resolution to this conflict, that an immediate ceasefire is urgently required.”

“It was extremely disappointing to see Fine Gael MEPs vote in favour of an amendment to a European Parliament resolution on the situation in Gaza that makes a ceasefire conditional on Israeli hostages being released and that Hamas is dismantled.” 

“Firstly, I want to reiterate that all hostages must be released without delay and without condition. I also believe we need a ceasefire now.”

“The position of Fine Gael MEPs is hugely damaging to the international reputation of Ireland. While all other Irish MEPs supported a ceasefire, Fine Gael voted to support the position of the far-right government of Israel.”

“An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar must publicly clarifying his party’s position on a ceasefire. As leader of Fine Gael, he must clarify whether the Fine Gael MEPs followed their party’s line or if they breached their party position to go on a solo run.”

MacManus concluded by stating the confusion over Fine Gael’s position on Gaza has damaged Irish efforts in working towards a ceasefire. 

“The European Parliament vote has caused confusion over what the official government policy on a ceasefire actually is. An Taoiseach needs to immediately clarify this position, and send a clear message to the international community that Ireland stands firmly in favour of a ceasefire.” ENDS

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