Tag Archives: Palestine

EU extends presence at Rafah crossing

The Council has extended the mandate of the EU co-ordinating office for Palestinian police support (EUPOL COPPS) and the mandate of the EU border assistance mission for the Rafah crossing point (EU BAM Rafah), until 30 June 2020. These missions are part of wider EU efforts in support of Palestinian state building in the context of working towards a comprehensive resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict based on a two-state solution.

EUPOL COPPS will continue to assist the Palestinian Authority in building the institutions of a future state of Palestine in the areas of policing and criminal justice based on its experience and cooperation with the Palestinian Authority since January 2006. Through its contribution to security and justice sector reform, the mission supports efforts to increase the security of the Palestinian population and to reinforce the rule of law. € 12.43 million have been allocated for the mission’s activities between 1 July 2019 and 30 June 2020.

The Council also extended the mandate of EUBAM Rafah until 30 June 2020. The mission is mandated to provide a third party presence at the Rafah crossing point in the Gaza Strip to contribute to building confidence between the Government of Israel and the Palestinian Authority, including enhancing Palestinian capacities on all aspects of border management related to the Rafah crossing point. The mission maintains its readiness to redeploy to the Rafah crossing point once the political and security situation allows. In the meantime, EUBAM Rafah will continue providing technical assistance to the Palestinian general administration for borders and crossings (GABC) in integrated border management. The mission’s budget for the period between 1 July 2019 and 30 June 2020 amounts to € 2.15 million.

Russian diplomats celebrate National Day in Jerusalem

According to Russian diplomatic sources, the Embassy of Russian Federation in Israel is hosting its annual National Day (12 June) reception in Jerusalem, in a gesture of recognition of West Jerusalem as capital of State of Israel not only de jure in statements, but also de facto.

Russia’s incoming Ambassador H.E. Anatoly Viktorov has invited guests to the reception (reportedly celebrated on 14th of June) at Sergei’s Courtyard.

Russian compound church

Sergei’s Courtyard constructed in 1889, but sometimes still referred to as New Courtyard, a part of a historic complex in the Jerusalem neighborhood  known as the Russian Compound (pictured), which Israeli authorities handed to Russia a decade ago in a goodwill gesture.

Russian compound Jerusalem

At present Russia remains committed to the decisions of the United Nations on the status of Jerusalem. In April 2017, Russian Foreign Ministry (MFA) issued a statement on the “urgent need” for resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, underlining its firm commitment to the decisions of the United Nations on the principles of settlement, including the status of East Jerusalem as the capital of the future Palestinian state.

However “at the same time, we consider it necessary to declare that in this context we consider West Jerusalem as the capital of the State of Israel” – the statement of Russian MFA concluded.

On December 6, Dmitry Peskov, Kremlin spokesperson, reaffirmed Russia‘s position to support the immediate resumption of direct Israeli-Palestinian negotiations on “all controversial issues, including the status of Jerusalem.”

In June 2017, the Israeli authorities suggested to Russian government to move the embassy to Jerusalem, but in response the diplomats said that Russia has no intention to do so until Israel and Palestine have settled their bilateral relations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EU calls Hamas for non-violent expression

“Dozens of Palestinians, including children, have been killed and hundreds injured from Israeli fire today, during ongoing mass protests near the Gaza fence. We expect all to act with utmost restraint to avoid further loss of life. Israel must respect the right to peaceful protest and the principle of proportionality in the use of force. Hamas and those leading the demonstrations in Gaza must ensure that they remain strictly non-violent and must not exploit them for other means” – the EU top diplomat Federica Mogherini said in a statement, addressing the eruption of violence in Gaza, related to the opening of the US Embassy in Jerusalem.

“During these days, both Israelis and Palestinians are commemorating defining moments for their nations. Each side in this conflict has legitimate claims and aspirations which need to be mutually acknowledged”

“Jerusalem is a holy city for Jews, Muslims and Christians. The ties of the Jewish people to Jerusalem are irrefutable, and must not be denied. And the same is true for the ties of the Palestinian people to the city”

“Any further escalation of an already extremely tense and complex situation would cause again further unspeakable sufferings to both peoples, and will make the perspective of peace and security even more remote. In this moment, wisdom and courage would be needed to go back to negotiations for a political solution, for the sake both of the Israeli and the Palestinian people, and the entire region. Only a two state solution will realistically allow both sides to fulfil their aspirations, put an end to the conflict, and achieve the just and lasting peace that Israelis and Palestinians long for and deserve”

“The EU remains firmly committed to continue working with both parties and with its partners in the international community towards a resumption of meaningful negotiations aimed at a two-state solution, based on the 4 june 1967 lines and with Jerusalem as capital of both”

“The European Union has a clear, consolidated position on Jerusalem, which was reaffirmed in numerous Foreign Affairs Council conclusions. The EU will continue to respect the international consensus on Jerusalem embodied in, inter alia, UN Security Council Resolution 478, including on the location of diplomatic representations until the final status of Jerusalem is resolved” – the statement concludes.

 

“Unacceptable” Abbas remarks on Holocaust

“The speech Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas delivered on 30 April contained unacceptable remarks concerning the origins of the Holocaust and Israel’s legitimacy. Such rhetoric will only play into the hands of those who do not want a two-state solution, which President Abbas has repeatedly advocated”- says the text of the European Action Service Statement.

“The Holocaust and World War Two have defined Europe’s modern history like no other event. Holocaust education remains central to building up resilience against all forms of hatred in our societies. Antisemitism is not only a threat for Jews but a fundamental menace to our open and liberal societies. The European Union remains committed to combat any form of anti-Semitism and any attempt to condone, justify or grossly trivialise the Holocaust.”

Middle East in focus of EU foreign ministers

The Foreign Affairs Council on 27 of February will start with a discussion on current affairs, allowing ministers to review pressing issues on the international agenda.

Republic of Moldova

Foreign ministers will exchange of views on the Republic of Moldova. They will focus among others on the implementation of the deep and comprehensive free trade area (DCFTA), the EU’s engagement with the country and future perspectives ahead of the next parliamentary elections.

They may also discuss the country’s role in the Eastern Partnership and engagement in the field of security. The Council will adopt conclusions on the Republic of Moldova after the debate.

Venezuela

Foreign ministers will discuss the situation in Venezuela which continues to be challenging. The Council will have a discussion on the latest developments and ahead of Presidential elections scheduled for 22 April.

Middle East peace process

The Council will discuss the Middle East peace process. Foreign ministers will continue exploring ways to achieve a two-state solution. They may also follow on up on the extraordinary session of the international donor group for Palestine, the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee meeting held on 31 January.

The discussion will also prepare the lunch with the Secretary General of the League of Arab States (LAS), Ahmed Aboul Gheit, and foreign ministers members of the LAS ministerial delegation on Jerusalem chaired by Jordan (Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Morocco, United Arab Emirates, the Palestinian Authority). They will discuss ways to revive the Middle East peace process.

EU-Norway to promote two state solution

Norway’s Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide and EU top diplomat Federica Mogherini have decided to convene an extraordinary session of the international donor group for Palestine, the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee (AHLC).

There is an urgent need to bring all parties together to discuss measures to speed up efforts that can underpin a negotiated two-state solution.

“Furthermore it is necessary to enable the Palestinian Authority to execute full control over Gaza, based on the Cairo agreement from 12 October 2017” – the EEAS statement says.

The meeting will be held in Brussels on 31 January 2018 at Ministerial level, hosted by the European Union and chaired by Norway.

Trump for conditionality of aid to Palestinians

Palestinians condemned remarks of U.S. President Donald Trump’s to withhold future aid payments to  the Palestinians’ in case of their  unwillingness to engage in peace talks with Israel.

“We will not be blackmailed” – said Hanan Ashrawi, a member of the Palestine Liberation Organization executive committee.

Palestinian rage at Trump has been  already hovering high over his recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, a declaration that also generated outrage across the Arab world.

Since 2000, EU Humanitarian Aid has provided more than €700 million in humanitarian aid to help meet the basic needs of the Palestinian population in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

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