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Spain bans ships carrying weapons for Israel from docking at its ports

Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Albares speaks to the media at the European Commission in Brussels, Belgium, on April 12, 2024. (Photo by Reuters)

Spain has decided to ban ships carrying weapons for Israel from docking at its ports, Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Albares says, a day after the country denied a vessel permission to call at a southeastern port.

Albares said Spain’s decision not to authorize ships carrying weapons for Israel to call at its ports comes as the country doesn't "want to contribute to war."

He noted that the ship that was denied access to a Spanish port on Thursday was the first such vessel to be blocked.

Albares noted that the refusal was consistent with the government's decision to suspend weapon export licenses to Israel after it launched the war on Gaza in October.

Transport Minister Oscar Puente on Thursday said Marianne Danica, an Israel-bound ship carrying arms, had requested permission to call at the port of Cartagena on May 21.

According to El Pais newspaper, the Danish-flagged ship is carrying 27 tonnes of explosive material from India to the port of Haifa in the occupied territories.

Spain has been one of Europe's most critical voices about Israel's genocidal war on Gaza and is working to encourage other European capitals to recognize Palestine as a state.

Madrid halted weapons sales to Israel after the start of the Israeli war on Gaza. 

Israel launched the war on Gaza on October 7 after the Palestinian resistance movement Hamas waged the surprise Operation Al-Aqsa Storm against the occupying entity in response to the Israeli regime's decades-long campaign of bloodletting and devastation against Palestinians.

Since the start of the offensive, the Tel Aviv regime has killed at least 35,303 Palestinians and injured tens of thousands more.

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