The EU should look at barring “extremist” Israelis who call for violence against Palestinians from visiting Europe, Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo said on Thursday.
The liberal premier pointed to Israeli violence against Palestinians in the West Bank and said the lack of action against such “violent extremists” was “unacceptable”.
“Our country must ensure that those who commit serious crimes, for example, those who commit violence in the West Bank, can be prevented from entering our country and the European Union,” De Croo told the Belgian parliament.
He suggested there could be sanctions on individuals, including “a minister who calls for the use of nuclear weapons against a population that cannot do anything and that already lives today in horrible conditions”.
War broke out after Hamas’s unprecedented October 7 attack on Israel killed more than 1,400 people, mostly civilians, and took more than 240 hostages, according to Israeli officials.
The attack sparked an intense Israeli military operation in the Gaza Strip that has killed more than 10,800 people, mainly civilians, according to the Hamas-run territory’s health ministry.
The latest conflict has also exacerbated tensions in the West Bank, occupied by Israel since the 1967 Arab-Israeli war.
At least 170 Palestinians and three Israelis have been killed across the West Bank since October 7, according to officials on both sides.
Eight EU countries including Belgium last month voted in favour of a non-binding resolution calling for an “immediate humanitarian truce”.
EU foreign ministers will discuss the conflict during a meeting on Monday.