From the BBC, 26/1/09:
A senior European Union official touring war-torn Gaza has blamed the ruling militant movement Hamas for the humanitarian crisis there. Humanitarian aid chief Louis Michel called the destruction left by Israel's offensive "abominable", but said Hamas bore "overwhelming responsibility". He said there would be no dialogue with the "terrorist" movement until it gave up violence and recognised Israel.
He also announced emergency aid for Gaza worth more than US $70m (£50m).
US President Barack Obama, meanwhile, dispatched his new Middle East envoy, George Mitchell, on his debut mission to the region having briefed him to engage "vigorously" to forge "genuine progress" in peace talks.
Sick of paying
...Mr Michel described the situation as "abominable, indescribable".
"At this time we have to also recall the overwhelming responsibility of Hamas," he said.
"I intentionally say this here - Hamas is a terrorist movement and it has to be denounced as such."
...The former Belgian foreign minister insisted there would be no dialogue with Hamas, saying its use of terrorism against Israeli civilians meant it was not a legitimate resistance movement.
...Announcing the extra aid, Mr Michel said people in the EU were sick of paying for the same infrastructure being destroyed over and over again in Israeli military action. The EU is the main donor to the Palestinians, having given three billion euros since 2000, Mr Michel said. "Every year, we spend 600 to 700m euros. Today we decided on a supplementary payment of 60m euros." ...