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May 31, 2016 / 23 Iyar, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘European Union’

EU Criticizes Demolition of Illegal Structures in Judea and Samaria

Sunday, May 22nd, 2016

By Jonathan Benedek/TPS

Israeli security forces continued its demolition of structures illegally built and sponsored by the European Union throughout Judea and Samaria this past week, prompting strong criticism from the EU.

“The regrettable trend of confiscations and demolitions since the beginning of the year, including of EU-funded humanitarian assistance, was confirmed once again this week by demolitions of temporary shelters in Jabal al-Baba, a Bedouin community in the so-called E1 area,” an EU spokesperson said shortly before the weekend.

The “so-called E1 area” referenced by the EU spokesperson is a region located east of Jerusalem within the municipality of the Israeli community of Maale Adumim. The EU wants to settle Arabs in the E1 area.

“The EU is strongly opposed to Israel’s settlement policy and actions taken in this context, including demolitions and confiscations, building the separation barrier beyond the 1967 line, evictions and forced transfers,” the EU spokesperson continued.

The illegal EU structures are built in areas recognized by the Oslo Accords, to which the EU is a party, as being under custodial control of Israel – the parts of Judea and Samaria known as Area C. The EU maintains that it is permitted to build in the Israeli-controlled territory because Israel does not sufficiently “care for the needs of the occupied population.”

“Israel’s role as the occupying power under international law is to care for the needs of the occupied population,” explained EU Ambassador to Israel Lars Faaborg-Andersen in an open Facebook chat with Israelis earlier this month. “Since, in some cases, Israel does not fulfill that responsibility, the EU has extended vital humanitarian aid such as shelters and water cisterns to people where they live.”

Israel has rejected this claim and has informed the European Union that it considers such construction illegal.

“They’re building without authorization, against the accepted rules, and there’s a clear attempt to create political realities there,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in January. “And when we take down this illegal construction we’re then, again, condemned, so it’s a catch-22 here. I think we have to reset our relationship with the EU.”

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Former London Mayor Compares EU to Napoleon, Hitler, Ahead of June 23 Brexit Referendum

Sunday, May 15th, 2016

Former London mayor Boris Johnson has told the Sunday Telegraph that the European Union is behaving like Adolf Hitler, striving to create a super-state. “Napoleon, Hitler, various people tried this out, and it ends tragically,” he said.

Johnson is a leader of the campaign to pull the UK out of the EU at the June 23 referendum. At this point the polls show the supporters and opponents of leaving the EU are split almost down the middle. Johnson’s comments received strong criticism from opponents who called them “offensive,” saying he showed a “lack of judgement.”

For his part, Johnson argued that “fundamentally what is lacking is the eternal problem, which is that there is no underlying loyalty to the idea of Europe. There is no single authority that anybody respects or understands. That is causing this massive democratic void.”

A group of concerned British ex-pats and Israelis has launched a public campaign to encourage pro-Israel Britons to “vote leave” in the upcoming EU Referendum. The “Support-Israel — Leave Europe” website focuses on four major reasons why Zionists should oppose the EU and seek to weaken it by encouraging Britain to leave.

The Thursday, June 23 referendum will decide whether Britain should leave or stay in the European Union. Prime Minister David Cameron promised to hold the referendum if he won the 2015 general election, seeing as so many in his own Conservative party, as well as the UK Independence Party (UKIP), argued that UK voters had not been asked since 1975—when they voted to stay in the EU—whether or not they thought this was still a good deal for them. And since the EU has changed tremendously since then, controlling every European citizen’s daily lives, Cameron announced: “It is time for the British people to have their say. It is time to settle this European question in British politics.”

The Brexit (combination Britain and Exit) camp believes the UK is being held back by the EU, which imposes too many rules on business and charges billions of pounds a year in membership fees with little in to show for it (Britain has held on to the Pound, unlike everyone else in the union who have switched to the euro, whose value is being controlled in Brussels).

The Brexit camp wants Britain to take back full control of its borders and reduce the number of people coming over to work. One of the main principles of EU membership is “free movement,” which means citizens of all EU countries don’t need to get a visa to go and live in other EU countries. And, as Boris Johnson has put it so eloquently, citing historic examples, the anti-EU British object to the “ever closer union” and the move towards the creation of a “United States of Europe.”

The Bank of England on Thursday warned that a vote for the UK to leave the European Union would hurt the economy and send the pound sharply lower, MarketWatch reported. The central bank said the “most significant risk” to its economic forecasts concern the so-called Brexit referendum on June 23.

“A vote to leave the EU could materially alter the outlook for output and inflation, and therefore the appropriate setting of monetary policy. Households could defer consumption and firms delay investment, lowering labor demand and causing unemployment to rise,” the BOE said in a statement accompanying its decision to keep its key rate at a record low of 0.5%. The BOE also said the pound is likely to depreciate further, “perhaps sharply,” in case of a vote to leave the EU. The pound has dropped 9% since its November peak, half of which reflects the risks associated with the referendum, the bank said, noting that “there are increasing signs that uncertainty associated with the EU referendum has begun to weigh on activity.”

Nevertheless, Conservative Party MP Iain Duncan Smith, who served as Secretary of State for Work and Pensions until March 2016, defended Johnson’s “historical parallels,” saying, “He talked about this nonsensical idea of trying to drive these different countries [together]. It’s a historical fact of life that if you go through Napoleon, Hitler, everyone else … I think the whole process of trying to drive Europe together by force or by bureaucracy ultimately makes problems.”

The Financial Times Brexit “poll of polls” shows 46% of UK voters want to stay in the European Union, while 43% would like to leave. However, the most recent poll, conducted on May 8 on a sample of 2,005 likely voters, showed almost the reverse picture: 46% want out, 44% prefer to stay, 11% are undecided.

JNi.Media

Israeli Envoy Tells European Union, NATO, ‘Together We Are Stronger’

Sunday, May 8th, 2016

Israeli envoy to the European Union and NATO, David Walzer, said in a statement on Friday that the strength to fight terrorism and to find the cures to deadly diseases can be found in unity.

“Fighting against terrorism is not enough,” said Walzer in a statement quoted by the European Jewish Press. “We need to cooperate in all areas, in showing up together in combating cancer, in research, space, desalination of water in Africa…

“Together we will be stronger to cope with other problems,” he said.

“I want the Europeans to think of their future together with our future,” he added. “We are one family.”

Hana Levi Julian

Netanyahu Circle Working Overtime to Pushback Claim of German Rift

Sunday, May 1st, 2016

The headline of Sunday morning’s Israel Hayom, the pro-Netanyahu daily freebee bankrolled by casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, was: “Jerusalem Sources: ‘Relations with Germany Tight.'” The optimistic message came in response to an embarrassing probe by Der Spiegel this weekend pointing a finger at Israel Hayom as the source of a grossly misleading story in February, which attempted to assign to German Chancellor Angela Merkel a position she never knew she held.

Whenever Merkel meets with Netanyahu, according to Spiegel, you can count on Israel Hayom to publish the confidential content of their discussion shortly thereafter. But this time, they went ahead and wrote this headline: “Merkel: This Isn’t the Time for Two States.”

Now, there’s nothing wrong with this headline, and many rightwing Israelis were delighted to see a leading Western leader coming to her senses in these trying times; the only problem was, of course, that Merkel never said nor even hinted anything of the kind. Merkel and her advisors were furious, naturally, because Netanyahu, the obvious source for the “leak,” had twisted the chancellor’s warnings against his policy in Judea and Samaria into an endorsement.

“Merkel had repeatedly made it clear to Netanyahu that she believes the effects of Israeli settlement construction in the occupied territories are disastrous,” Spiegel reported. “The settlement policy, she believes, makes it unlikely that a viable Palestinian state can be established in accordance with plans aimed at a two-state solution. Any other approach, Merkel and Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier are convinced, would ultimately transform Israel into an apartheid regime. Netanyahu, however, has not shown himself to be the least bit impressed by such arguments.”

What emerges from the Spiegel story is a growing German concern that Netanyahu has been taking advantage of Germany’s support, cooperation and friendship and is using Berlin as a bulwark against policies Berlin supports. “The perception has been growing in the German government that Netanyahu is instrumentalizing our friendship,” Rolf Mützenich, deputy floor leader for the Social Democrats (SPD) in parliament, told Spiegel. The SPD is Merkel’s junior coalition partner. Foreign Minister Steinmeier is an SPD leader.

According to Spiegel, what Netanyahu has been doing these past few months, is turn warnings from Merkel and other senior German officials, such as Foreign Minister Steinmeier, that Israel’s settlement policy is making it impossible for a future two-state solution to ever work — into seemingly throwing in the towel and accepting this reality as inevitable. And nothing could be further from the truth. According to Spiegel, Germany, like the rest of the EU, is hell bent on establishing two states in Israel, because they are convinced that, with the Arab demographics being what they are, the only way open to Israel to remain a Jewish state otherwise is by a system of apartheid.

We can argue against this concept until we’re blue in the face, we can point to declining demographics on the Arab side, we can show a growing wave of Arab immigration from the PA and Gaza to Canada and the US, we can point to Israel’s history of an unwavering democratic approach to its minorities — the Europeans, at this point, aren’t prepared to buy any of it. And spreading headlines that they do when they don’t doesn’t change their minds, unfortunately.

The Israel Hayom Sunday article is an attempt to blame the Germans for the February faux pas. They cite “sources in Jerusalem” who say the Spiegel story is “an internal-German attempt to attack Merkel over her good relations with Prime Minister Netanyahu.” That statement could only be made by someone who didn’t read the Spiegel story, in which named sources in Merkel’s circle are accusing Netanyahu of misusing his friendship with Germany.

Then the Israeli paper claimed that this is what they heard in the Hebrew simultaneous translation, which is their version of the dog ate my homework. And finally, they pin the whole thing on Netanyahu, who pointed the entire Israeli press in that direction following the Chancellor’s remarks, saying she had finally come to her senses regarding the current slim chances of negotiations based on the two-state solution. For his part, Netanyahu pinned the blame for why the 2-state is dead for now on the “situation in the Middle East and the Palestinian Authority.”

The real problem is that the Netanyahu approach no longer works, at least according to Spiegel. The Chancellery has indeed lost hope that the peace process can be revived — “so long as Netanyahu remains in office,” the magazine insists, describing the visit of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas to Berlin two weeks ago, when Merkel was “demonstrative in her support,” when she said, “I understand why President Abbas continually seeks out the Security Council.”

Ouch.

Finally, according to Spiegel, accusations from Netanyahu that the EU labeling of products made by Jews in Judea and Samaria are essentially an anti-Jewish boycott “are no longer taken seriously in the Chancellery. Merkel’s foreign policy advisor Christoph Heusgen is supportive of the EU approach.”

JNi.Media

Palestinian Authority Flag Banned — With Others — at Eurovision

Sunday, May 1st, 2016

Palestinian Authority officials have expressed outrage at the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) decision to ban any display of Palestinian Authority flags at next month’s Eurovision song contest in Sweden.

But it wasn’t personal — a fact that seems to have escaped the notice of the PA government in Ramallah.

EBU released the “flag policy” on their website on Friday. “Particularly, the organizers request and urge the fan community to respect and appreciate the non-political nature of the Eurovision Song Contest,” the statement read. Only flags representing UN member states are to be permitted, along with the “rainbow flag” and the European Union flag – but only if they are not “used as [a] tool to intentionally make a political statement during the show.”

There is a long list of “not” permitted flags, which include local, regional, or provincial flags, those with commercial messages, “flags of disputed territories,” offensive statements, non-English statements and high objects such as selfie-sticks that might obstruct the cameras. There are also size restrictions as well.

Nevertheless, newly-appointed PLO secretary-general and heir-apparent Saeb Erekat slammed the decision on Saturday.

Writing to EBU President Jean-Paul Philippot, Erekat expressed his “outrage and indignation” according to the Bethlehem-based Ma’an news agency, and a post on Twitter. Erekat called the decision “discriminatory and a serious offense against our nation.”

The EBU, which produces the show, also banned flags from other disputed political entities such as Crimea, Northern Cyprus and – as the “Palestine Chronicle” noted – the Islamic State. (No, this is no joke – the PC really did write that and apparently really intended it as a geographical and political reference.)

The first semi-final will be held on May 10, the second on May 12 and the final date is set for May 14.

Rachel Levy

France Snubbed Israeli Offer of Advanced Counter Terror Technology

Tuesday, April 26th, 2016

Nearly a year before Da’esh (ISIS) terrorists tore apart a beautiful Paris night, an Israeli company offered terrorist tracking software to France.

It was just after the January 2015 slaughter by a dual Da’esh (ISIS) and Al Qaeda terrorist cells at the Paris offices of the satiric Charlie Hebdo magazine, where 12 people were killed, and the Jewish Hyper Cacher kosher market, just before the start of the Sabbath, where four people died.

Nearly a year prior, four people died at the Jewish Museum of Brussels in a similar attack, also by a Da’esh (ISIS) terrorist with French citizenship.

The advanced technology could have allowed French security officials pick up the signals that would have red-flagged the terrorists who murdered 130 people and wounded 368 more on November 13, 2015.  It was only last month that the mastermind of that attack was finally tracked down and caught.

According to a report this week on the U.S.-based Fox News network, the data-mining technology would have helped French authorities “connect all the dots” in the Islamist extremist community, because it works by analyzing and matching up fragmented intelligence reports from several different national and international databases. The software then provides the most up-to-date information available on potential terrorists for its clients, such as counter terrorism agents.

The offer was made to the Directorate-General for Internal Security (DGSI) of France, the country’s main intelligence agency, in accordance with a pledge made by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to work closely with Europe on enhancing security following attacks in France and Brussels. In Israel, that was seen as a call to share intelligence and technology.

“In Paris or Brussels or San Bernardino or Tel Aviv or Jerusalem, terror must be condemned equally and it must be fought equally,” Netanyahu warned at the time.

But Israel’s offer was rejected.

An Israeli counter terror specialist familiar with the technology and the company told FoxNews.com, “French authorities liked it but the official came back and said there was a higher-level instruction not to buy Israeli technology.

“The discussion just stopped.”

Instead, Da’esh (ISIS) terrorists carried out a series of eight attacks terror attacks, including several suicide bombings, on November 13, 2015, in central Paris. President Francois Hollande called the attacks an “act of war” by ISIS. They were planned in Syria, organized in Belgium and carried out with help from citizens of France. All of the known attackers were EU citizens who had fought with Da’esh in Syria.

The European Union is now paying the price for its unswerving commitment to uphold the “rights” of the Palestinian Authority, right or wrong, against Israel even at the cost of its own security. The EU has been directly involved in the funding and construction of infrastructure, homes and schools by Palestinian Authority Arabs on Israeli-controlled land in Area C under the Oslo Accords, despite its illegality. The EU has also been supportive of a boycott against Israeli-produced goods, even going so far as to issue guidelines urging its member states to label products manufactured in post-1967 Jewish communities as non-Israeli, regardless of the citizenship of the producers.

The European Union has just barely avoided an outright stance supporting the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

France complied – it obviously agreed with the stance, nor is President Hollande’s dislike for Prime Minister Netanyahu any national secret – and the bill has now come due for French hatred at the top.

The British Labour Party is similarly afflicted with rampant anti-Semitism. What price will the UK end up paying for its love of Arab hatred?

Hana Levi Julian

EU Condemns Death Sentences in Gaza for Suspected Collaborators With Israel

Wednesday, April 20th, 2016

By Jonathan Benedek/TPS

The European Union released a statement earlier today in which it condemned the military courts in the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip for sentencing to death five convicts accused of collaborating with Israel.

“The EU Missions in Jerusalem and Ramallah condemn the five death sentences issued by military courts in the Gaza Strip on 18 April,” said the EU statement. “These include three new death sentences and the confirmation of two previous ones, all on the grounds of collaboration with enemy forces.”

“This brings to ten the total number of death sentences to be issued in Gaza this year,” the EU added.

Death sentences for convicted informants and collaborators with Israel are nothing new for the Hamas regime as the terror organization has executed many such individuals over the years. However, the EU focused less on opposition to the punishment of suspected collaborators with Israel and more on the use of the death penalty in general.

“As in their most recent statement on 13 April, the EU Missions in Jerusalem and Ramallah recall the EU’s firm opposition under all circumstances to the use of capital punishment,” the EU stressed in its statement.

“It considers capital punishment to be cruel and inhuman, that it fails to provide deterrence to criminal behavior, and represents an unacceptable denial of human dignity and integrity,” the statement continued.

The EU expressed its belief that the removal of the death penalty would help to serve as a step forward in the advancement of human rights under the Hamas terror regime in Gaza.

The EU also asked that the Hamas authorities in Gaza abide by the decision of the Palestinian Authority, which only governs over Palestinian communities in Judea and Samaria and not in Gaza, to implement a moratorium on the death penalty.

“The authorities in Gaza must refrain from carrying out any executions of prisoners and comply with the moratorium on executions put in place by the Palestinian Authority, pending abolition of the death penalty in line with the global trend,” insisted the EU.

TPS / Tazpit News Agency

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/eu-condemns-death-sentences-in-gaza-for-suspected-collaborators-with-israel/2016/04/20/

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