Danish Foreign Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen is visiting Israel and Palestine on Sunday, where he is set to meet with the Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen, as well as the Prime Minister of the Palestinian Authority, Mohammad Shtayyeh.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs confirms this.
Lars Løkke Rasmussen will also meet with the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Tor Wennesland.
Hamas’ terror attacks on Israel, the humanitarian crisis in Gaza, and the far-reaching consequences for both Israel and Palestine top the agenda for the trip. Besides his political counterparts, Lars Løkke Rasmussen will, among other things, meet with Israeli family members of hostages in Gaza and visit the West Bank.
Foreign Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen states:
“Following Hamas’ dreadful terror attack on Israel on October 7, hundreds of Israelis were killed by Hamas fighters, and over 200 were taken as hostages and transported into Gaza. The vast majority of these individuals are still being held in Gaza. There is no doubt that Israel has the right to defend itself in this situation, but it must, of course, be done within the framework of international law, including humanitarian law. This is one of the topics I will discuss with my Israeli colleague,” says Foreign Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen, continuing:
“Furthermore, it is crucial that in this difficult situation, we keep a level head and distinguish between the terrorist organization Hamas and the Palestinian Authority. This is also why I will meet with the Prime Minister of the Authority, Mohammad Shtayyeh, to express our full support for the Authority and the civilian Palestinians. From the Danish side, we have just announced an additional 75 million kroner in humanitarian aid to Gaza, where the situation is deeply critical, and many thousands of people have lost their lives.
“Right now, it is important to resolve the ongoing crisis. At the same time, we must not lose sight of the long-term perspective. Therefore, Denmark – along with the EU – is working to restart the peace process towards a two-state solution,” concludes the Foreign Minister.
This is the first time a representative from the Danish government has visited Israel and Palestine following the terror attack on October 7. It is also the first ministerial visit from a Nordic country.