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France, Belgium ‘concerned’ over high number of casualties in Israeli attacks on Gaza

France and Belgium expressed concern over a high number of casualties in the besieged Palestinian enclave of Gaza due to Israeli attacks.

"We are concerned over the ways how military operations are conducted by Israel in Gaza, with a very high number of casualties, and we are also very concerned over the humanitarian situation that becomes very critical," French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna said at the doorstep of the EU Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels.

She stressed the need for a "long-term, durable truce that would lead to a cease-fire."

Colonna also expressed concern over the Israeli settler attacks on Palestinians in the West Bank.

Israel launched relentless air and ground attacks on the Gaza Strip following a cross-border attack by the Palestinian group Hamas on Oct. 7.

Israel resumed its military offensive on the Gaza Strip on Dec. 1 after the end of a weeklong humanitarian pause with the Palestinian group Hamas.

Nearly 18,000 Palestinians mostly children and women have been killed and more than 49,200 others injured in Israeli attacks on the besieged enclave since Oct. 7.

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