EU steps toward removing Hamas from its terrorist black-list

The European Union’s top court took a step toward confirming the removal of Hamas from the EU’s terrorism blacklist, despite fierce protests from Israel. A legal adviser at the European Court of Justice, whose advice is usually followed by judges, recommended that the court reject an appeal by the Council of EU member states against a lower EU court’s decision in late 2014, to remove the Palestinian group from the sanctions list due to flawed procedures.

Israel responded to the recommendation by the EU’s legal adviser on Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip and is still considered a terror organization by Israel and the United States, saying the matter at hand was “only a (legal) opinion, which is not binding on the court and is part of the European judicial process.” The Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman told TV7 that Israel is “convinced that the European union will do all that is required in order to keep Hamas, which is an active terrorist organization, on the EU’s terror list.” He noted that Jerusalem was following the matter closely, and are waiting for the full recommendation to be published.