The European Union\’s top court took a step toward confirming the removal of Hamas, as well as the Tamil Tigers, from an EU terrorism blacklist despite protestations from Israel and the Sri Lankan government.
An advocate general at the European Court of Justice, whose advice is usually followed by judges, recommended on Thursday that they reject an appeal by the Council of EU member states against the lower EU court\’s decisions in late 2014 to remove both movements from the sanctions list due to flaw procedures.
At the time, Israel, which has had fraught relations with the EU in recent years, recalled Europeans\’ treatment of Jews in the Holocaust and denounced the bloc\’s "staggering hypocrisy".
Israel responded to the court officer\’s advice on Hamas, the Palestinian Islamist movement that controls the Gaza Strip and is still considered a terrorist organization by Israel and the US. "We are waiting for the full opinion to be published," said Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesperson Emmanuel Nahshon said of Thursday\’s recommendation: "This is only a (legal) opinion, which is not binding on the court and is part of the European judicial process. He added that "We are convinced that the European Union will do all that is required in order to keep Hamas, an active terrorist group, on the European terror list."