On the Upgrade of EU-Israel Relations

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Resolution adopted at the Paris Council meeting, 9-12 October 2008.

The European Green Party

-        having regard to the EU statement after the EU-Israeli Association Council meeting on 16 June 2008, which stipulates that: “The process of developing a closer EU-Israeli partnership needs to be, and to be seen, in the context of the broad range of our common interests and objectives which notably include the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through the implementation of the two-state solution.”

-        having regard to Article 2 of the EU-Israel Association Agreement, which establishes that: “Relations between the parties, as well as all the provisions of the Agreement itself, shall be based on a respect for human rights and democratic principles, which guides their internal policy and constitutes an essential element of this Agreement. 

-        having regard to the April 2008 Progress Report on the European Neighborhood Policy, which establishes that: “Issues raised in the framework of the political dialogue included inter alia: the peace process, the situation in the Middle East, the situation of the Arab minority in Israel, restrictions of movement in West Bank and Gaza Strip, the construction of the separation barrier, administrative detentions, the dismantling of outposts, the envisaged expansion of certain Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem, more checkpoints. Little concrete progress has however been achieved on the issues as such.”

-        having regard to the Work Programme of the French Presidency of the Council of the European Union that states: “The objective of strengthening relations with Israel, which the Presidency will pursue in keeping with the outcome of the Association Council of 16 June, will have to take into account developments in the situation in the Middle East with a view to resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”

a)    notes that on 16 June 2008, the European Union and Israel agreed to upgrade their relations within the framework of the EU-Israel Association Agreement. This starts a process to end in April 2009 with the definition of a common Action Plan that involves the adoption of initiatives and the creation of stronger ties in a broad spectrum, including economic, trade, academic, security and diplomatic fields

b)    notes the statement of Alexandr Vondra (Berlin, 17 June 2008), Czech Deputy Prime minister, that the Czech presidency will “strive to further enhance the high level of cooperation attained in the areas of security, trade, higher education and research and technological development” and that it “will support the gradual Israeli integration into specific areas of the European Single Market”

1)    shares the frustration of both Israelis and the Palestinians stemming from the protracted conflict between the two sides, which prevents a full development of political, social and economic capital of both societies

2)    reiterates that a strong and equal partnership between the EU and Israel as well as between the EU and the Palestinians in all areas of peaceful cooperation is a desirable goal of the European foreign policy

3)    doubts the wisdom of decoupling the prospect of EU-Israeli deeper cooperation from the development of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process

4)     calls on its elected members in the European Parliament, its parliamentary and governmental representatives, the Governments of EU countries and the European Commission to condition further deepening of the EU-Israeli relations by developments in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process and by compliance of both parties to the conflict with the international law and human rights norms

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