The European Commission on Sunday called on Israel to respect international law and allow access to people suffering and dying in Israeli attacks in the Gaza Strip.
The violence in the Gaza Strip must stop, the European Union's External Relations Commissioner Benita Ferrero-Waldner said also before an EU diplomatic mission to the region.
Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg of the Czech Republic, the current EU president, acknowledged that it would be very difficult for the mission to achieve success.
"It is absolutely necessary that violence has to stop," Ferrero-Waldner told reporters in Prague ahead of the trip to be led by the Czech EU presidency.
Israeli ground forces began the invasion in the coastal Palestinian territory on Saturday after eight days of air attacks.
More than 500 Palestinians have been killed in Israeli air and ground offensive.
Schwarzenberg said it would be hard to achieve a ceasefire during the mission due to start in Egypt later on Sunday and continue in Israel, the Palestinian territories and Jordan.
"We will try to open all ways for humanitarian aid to be able to access to Gaza and we will try to discuss what conditions should be set to enable a ceasefire."
Last Mod: 04 Ocak 2009, 15:57