Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman met with EU Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton last night and said that Israel’s closure of Gaza will continue until the flow of weapons into the area is halted. Lieberman called on Europe to help with the efforts to halt the flow of weapons into the Strip and to put together a “strong, real and effective” force to prevent smuggling from taking place. “I can assure you that the moment the weapons smuggling to Gaza stops, the siege will be lifted,” Lieberman said.
An EU Statement said that Ashton’s visit was aimed to confirm the EU’s commitment to the peace process and to move efforts forward to open the Gaza border crossings and to improve reconstruction and recovery efforts. Ashton also discussed the Israeli-Palestinian peace process yesterday in separate meetings with Defence Minister Ehud Barak and Opposition Leader Tzipi Livni. Ashton is scheduled to meet with Palestinian leaders in Ramallah today.