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May 23, 2015 / 5 Sivan, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘European Union’

EU Chief Meeting Next Week with Netanyahu, Abbas

Friday, May 15th, 2015

European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini is scheduled to arrive in Israel next week, her office said in a statement Friday.

Mogherini “will travel to the Middle East on Wednesday 20 and Thursday 21 May,” and is expected to meet both Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas during her visit.

The EU head will also meet with “a number of other Israeli and Palestinian interlocutors, to discuss the bilateral relations as well as prospects for the Middle East peace process,” the statement said.

The impending visit follows Israel’s installation of its new coalition government headed by Netanyahu for a record fourth term in office.

On Monday, EU foreign ministers are expected to discuss current issues taking place in the region with Mogherini at a routine meeting of the European body prior to her trip.

Recently it was revealed that the European Union has taken an exceptionally active role in funding and otherwise aiding in the construction of hundreds of illegal Palestinian structures in “Area C.” These are territories that are controlled solely under the State of Israel in accordance with the internationally-recognized Oslo Accords.

These areas are expected to be retained by Israel in any final status agreement between the two parties.

Liberman Suggests EU Print ‘Made in the West Bank’ Label on Yellow Star

Friday, April 17th, 2015

Published in Jewish Business News by Ilan Shavit Speaking to Israel Radio, Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman suggested the EU print its warning labels of products made in the West Bank on a background of a Yellow Star.

The Hebrew term for the item is “Tlai Tzahov,” or yellow patch.

Sixteen European Union (EU) foreign ministers have signed a letter calling on the EU’s foreign policy chief to label Israeli products made beyond the 1949 armistice line as “Made in the West Bank.”

In the letter to EU Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini, the foreign ministers said that the proposal would help consumers from being “misled by false information.”

“European consumers must indeed have confidence in knowing the origin of goods they are purchasing,” the ministers wrote. “Green Line Israel and Palestinian producers will benefit from this.”

The initiative was led by Belgian Foreign Minister Didier Reynders and was supported by ministers from the U.K., France, Spain, Denmark, Ireland, Croatia, Malta, the Netherlands, Sweden, Portugal, Slovenia, Italy, Luxembourg, Finland, and Austria.

EU ministers from a number of strong Israeli allies, mainly in Eastern Europe—including Germany, Poland, Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Greece, Hungary, Cypress, Romania—did not sign the letter.

The letter cites a previous one advocating the same labeling measure that was sent to Mogherini’s predecessor, Catherine Ashton, in 2013. At the time, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry urged Ashton to put the initiative on hold while he pursued peace talks between the Israelis and Palestinians.

Lieberman told Israel Radio repairing Israel’s relations with the U.S. should be the prime goal of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s next government, because only the U.S. will be able to quash economic boycotts against the Jewish State.

Lieberman questioned the sincerity of the EU, which, while thousands are being slaughtered in Syria, Iraq and Yemen, makes no mention of those crimes against humanity, but find ample times to attack Israeli commerce.

Netanyahu is meeting on Friday with his two most loyal coalition partners, Lieberman and Jewish Home chairman Naftali Bennett. Both have expressed some apprehension at the manner with which the PM has been treating them in the coalition talks, as compared with other potential partners, i.e. the Haredi parties.

Iran Warns US on Sanctions: ‘All or Nothing’

Sunday, April 5th, 2015

Iran has threatened to scuttle the Obama administration’s “key parameters” for a deal to cover its nuclear program and said Washington’s “fact sheet”  misrepresents last week’s agreement.

Sure enough, before the ink hardly has dried on the arrangement, agreement or key parameters – depending on your spin – Iran has warned that President Barack Obama must annul all sanctions.

The State Dept. Fact sheet states:

U.S. and E.U. nuclear-related sanctions will be suspended after the IAEA has verified that Iran has taken all of its key nuclear-related steps. If at any time Iran fails to fulfill its commitments, these sanctions will snap back into place.

The architecture of U.S. nuclear-related sanctions on Iran will be retained for much of the duration of the deal and allow for snap-back of sanctions in the event of significant non-performance.

U.S. sanctions on Iran for terrorism, human rights abuses, and ballistic missiles will remain in place under the deal.

As we have written here before, any agreement between the West and Iran or the Arab world simply is a basis for another argument.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani dismissed the “fact sheet” as fiction and stated on Sunday, “During the negotiations, we have always planned for the termination of the economic, financial and banking sanctions and we have never negotiated on their suspension, otherwise, no understanding would be made.”

State Dept. spokeswoman Marie Harf said Friday, “We expect for the anti-Iran sanctions suspension piece to happen generally within the first year, but again, if Iran takes these steps more quickly, then the suspension can come more quickly.”

Iran’s deputy lead negotiator Seyed Abbas Araqchi contradicted her and said, “This is a wrong impression about the Lausanne understanding [that] explicitly states that the sanctions will be annulled; all nuclear-related economic and financial sanctions will be removed in the first stage.”

Now that Iran has a temporary deal in hand, it is acting as if it has the upper hand. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is desperate for some kind of achievement on paper than can mask his countless failures. A deal might even win him a Nobel Peace Prize and give President Obama’s justification for having prematurely received it in his first term of office, before he by his own admission had not done anything to earn it.

Foreign Minister Zarif warned on Sunday Iran can walk away from the deal just as easily as Obama can threaten to do so.

He told Iranian television:

Either side in this agreement can, in the case of the other side violating the agreement, cease its own steps.

As with Palestinian Authority “negotiations” with Israel, under the iron fist of the Obama administration, it already is clear that Iran already is negotiating in public to push Obama further against the wall.

The more he pushes, the more Congress might push back and ditch the deal.

2 Cops Hurt, 1 Female Attacker Killed Outside Istanbul Police HQ

Wednesday, April 1st, 2015

Two police officers were wounded and a female terrorist carrying a bomb was killed in a shootout Wednesday outside Istanbul’s police headquarters.

Turkish police special forces were deployed to the site, according to Istanbul Governor Vasip Sahin, who spoke with the BBC. A second gunman who opened fire was wounded by special forces and then taken captive.

The identity of the attackers is not yet clear.

One day earlier, two members of the banned DHKP-C (Revolutionary Liberation Party Front), a Marxist group stormed the largest courthouse in Istanbul and took prosecutor Mehmet Selim Kiraz hostage.

The DHKP-C is listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the United States and the European Union.

Both the attackers and their hostage, the prosecutor later died in a shootout with police. On Wednesday morning hundreds of people attended Kiraz’s funeral at the courthouse where he was shot and killed before proceeding to the city’s Eyup Sultan mosque.

New EU Report Calls For Tougher Sanctions Against Israel Over Construction

Sunday, March 22nd, 2015

A report that is being prepared by the European Union (EU) calls for tougher sanctions against Israel over the Jewish state’s continued construction in eastern Jerusalem, which the EU said is threatening the “viability of the two-state solution.”

The report, which has yet to be released, states that a “vicious cycle of violence” in Jerusalem last year “occurred against the background of the systematic increase in settlement activity, tensions over the Haram al-Sharif (Temple Mount), and rising levels of tensions and acts of violence on both sides.”

“The expansion of settlements has continued, including in highly sensitive areas… and [has] been followed in force by waves of demolitions and evictions,” the report says, The Guardian reported.

Additionally, the report recommends new restrictions against “known violent settlers,” steps to inform EU consumers about products from Jewish communities in Judea and Samaria, and “efforts to raise awareness” among European businesses about the risks of working with those Jewish communities.

According to The Guardian, the report reflects a “strong desire” by European governments for additional sanctions against Israel for “continued settlement building.”

An Israeli government spokesman on Friday said the report “is so extremely one-sided a report that it distorts reality beyond comprehension.”

EU Pushes Israel to Negotiate ‘Peace’ as PA Heads to ICC

Thursday, March 19th, 2015

The European Union is pushing Israel to get back to work on reaching a final status agreement with the Palestinian Authority as its leaders prepare to sue Israel for “war crimes” at the International Criminal Court.

The pressure comes on the heels of an historic vote in which Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu was elected for a fourth term, the only person to be so chosen other than Israeli founding father David Ben Gurion.

Late Wednesday night, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini spoke with Netanyahu and congratulated him on his re-election. She confirmed the “readiness of the EU to work with the new Israeli government on the mutually beneficial bilateral relationship as well as the peaceful resolution of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict,” according to a statement sent to media on Thursday. Mogherini and Netanyahu “agreed to work together for the security of Israel and that of the region,” the statement added. The EU foreign policy chief stressed the need for the relaunch of peace negotiations “with the aim of achieving a comprehensive peace agreement based on a two-state solution.”

Netanyahu stated firmly in this campaign that he would no longer attempt and in fact would work to block the establishment of an independent PA state as long as he is in office, due to the security risks such a move now clearly presents to Israel’s citizens at home.

Somehow this message has not been absorbed by the leadership of the European Union.

“The EU is committed to working with the incoming Israeli government on a mutually beneficial relationship as well as on the re-launch of the peace process,” Mogherini said in a statement earlier Wednesday.

“We are at a crucial moment with many threats all over the Middle East. The EU staunchly supports a peaceful resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, in the interest of the Israeli people, of the Palestinian people, and of the whole region. We are at your side, you can count on us,” Mogherini assured.

She called on Israel’s “bold leadership” to reach “a comprehensive, stable and viable settlement of a conflict that has already deprived too many generations of peace and security. It’s time to turn this page and I’m confident that we can work together with the international community for a solution that will guarantee peace and security in the Middle East.”

Perhaps the EU leader has been conversing with U.S. President Barack Obama, who is now contemplating an historic change of his own.

For the first time ever, the American president is weighing support for a PA resolution in the United Nations Security Council that would establish a PA state in violation of the internationally-recognized Oslo Accords, and would force Israel to withdraw from Judea, Samaria and parts of Jerusalem restored to its capital in 1967.

On Monday, Netanyahu visited the eastern Jerusalem neighborhood of Har Homa and vowed to preserve the unity of the capital “in all its parts,” saying he would “continue to build and fortify” the city.

The Palestinian Authority is set to become a member of the International Criminal Court at The Hague on April 1.

Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) leader Wasel Abu Yousseff told Reuters on Thursday, “This makes it more necessary than ever to go to the international community and to go to the ICC and escalate peaceful resistance and boycott against the ‘occupation.’”

Israel Demolishes EU-Funded Illegal Buildings near Hebrew University [video]

Wednesday, March 11th, 2015

Israel demolished on Tuesday several illegal shanties in land zoned for a national park near Hebrew University’s Mount Scopus campus and funded by the European Union.

The EU denounced the bulldozing of the buildings and stated:

We condemn today’s demolition of temporary shelters funded by the European Union… as part of its response to the needs of the affected communities.

It made no mention that it threw Europeans’ tax money down the drain by funding construction inside a future national park and without permits, mostly for Bedouin whom they help pay to claim government land in eastern Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria.

The demolitions were initiated by the Israel Nature and Parks Authority, which acts against anyone trying to live or damage areas that are designated as preserved.

Regavim, which campaigns against illegal Arab buildings and false claims against Jewish landowners in Judea and Samaria, said the demolition was unusual and “certainly doesn’t happen to EU buildings.”

The Israeli Committee against House Demolitions claimed that Israel has demolished 552 structures in eastern Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria this year, according to the Ma’an News Agency, based in Bethlehem.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/israel-demolishes-eu-funded-illegal-buildings-near-hebrew-university-video/2015/03/11/

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