Hamas slams France for sending frigate to Gaza
Head of Hamas government in Strip lashes out over deployment of small French warship to take part in mission against arms smuggling: 'We expected France to send hospital ships to treat children burned by banned weapons rather than deploy navy ship to reinforce blockade'
"We expected France, whose motto is 'liberty, equality, fraternity' to send hospital ships to treat the children burned by banned weapons or to set up a humanitarian bridge...rather than deploy a navy ship to reinforce the blockade," Haniyeh said in a statement.
The Germinal frigate has been deployed to international waters off Gaza to battle arms smuggling to the territory.
Haniyeh also dismissed criticism by European Commissioner for Development and Humanitarian Aid Louis Michel, who Monday said Hamas bore "overwhelming responsibility" for the Israel's 22-day war in Gaza.
"We are astonished by the European position which blames the victims and the oppressed people for the tragedy that befell the Gaza Strip," he said.