(JTA) – The European Union (EU) will appeal the decision by an EU court to remove Hamas from the group’s terror list.
Federica Mogherini, the EU’s foreign policy chief, said Monday that the EU’s council of ministers at a meeting in Brussels decided to challenge the court’s findings, Reuters reported.
Last month, the Luxembourg-based General Court of the European Union ruled that the 2001 decision to put Hamas on a blacklist of terrorist groups was based not on legal reasoning but on press and Internet reports.
The court froze Hamas assets for three months pending appeals and emphasized that the ruling did “not imply any substantive assessment of the question of the classification of Hamas as a terrorist group.”
Hamas’ military wing was added to the first EU blacklist of terrorist groups issued in the wake of the 9/11 attacks on New York and Washington. Hamas’ political wing was blacklisted in 2003.
While the case is under appeal, Hamas will remain on the terrorism list and its assets will remain frozen pending a decision by the EU’s highest court, the Court of Justice, according to Reuters.
Mogherini also said the EU would study ways to avoid similar court decisions in the future.
Hamas called the appeal “an immoral step” and said it provides Israel “with the cover for its crimes against the Palestinian people,” the French news agency AFP reported.