London: European countries from Britain to Romania have announced dozens of evacuations from Gaza amid violence in the region.
British Foreign Secretary William Hague yesterday said 27 British and their Palestinian dependents left Gaza late Sunday through Israel to Jordan.
Romania`s foreign ministry said 84 citizens living in Gaza in mixed Romanian-Palestinian families arrived at an air base north of Bucharest yesterday from Amman, Jordan.
In Sweden, Foreign Minister Carl Bildt tweeted that 93 Swedish citizens had been evacuated from Gaza to Jordan. Swedish Foreign Ministry spokesman Erik Wirkensjo said the Swedes were among a few hundred other nationals who were evacuated from Gaza Sunday.
In Turkey, the foreign ministry said it assisted 28 Turkish citizens who requested help to leave the region. The group crossed into Jordan yesterday.
Israel launched an air strike campaign in the Hamas-controlled Gaza last Tuesday, saying it was responding to heavy rocket fire from the territory. At least 175 people have died since the offensive began.
The outbreak of violence followed the kidnappings and killings of three Israeli teenagers in the West Bank last month, and the subsequent kidnapping and killing of a Palestinian teenager in an apparent revenge attack.
Hague spoke to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman over the weekend and urged for an immediate cease-fire.