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April 23, 2014 / 23 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘European Union’

Iran Says Its Foreign Minister Scolded Kerry

Monday, December 16th, 2013

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, in separate phone calls, allegedly scolded U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry for what he said was an American breach of the recent interim agreement between major world powers and Iran over its nuclear development program.

“Zarif deplored Washington’s recent move,” according to the regime-controlled Fars News Agency. “The Americans have taken improper measures in the last few days and we have given the appropriate response to them after considering all aspects of the issue,” Zarif said on Sunday.

He also called European Union Foreign Policy chief Catherine Ashton to reiterate that the two sides should step towards  confidence-building measures.

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister and senior negotiator in talks with the world powers Seyed Abbas Araqchi is slated to meet with Ashton in Brussels on Tuesday morning.

EU Promises ‘Unprecedented’ Aid to Buy PA-Israel Peace Pact

Monday, December 16th, 2013

European Union foreign ministers meeting Brussels on Monday approved a plan to buy peace between Israel and the Palestinian Authority with “unprecedented” amounts of political, financial and security support.

If both sides reach a peace pact, the EU promised to offer both of them a “special privileged partnership” that would give them increased access to European markets, facilitation of trade and investment and closer cultural and scientific ties and other advantages.

EU Wants to Pay Israel and the Palestinian Authority to Sign Deal

Friday, December 13th, 2013

A European Union official said that its Political and Security Committee has approved a policy to offer Israel and the Palestinian Authority an aid package that could be worth billions of dollars if they sign an agreement, Haaretz reported.

The official, who insisted on anonymity, said the European Union will announce the policy on Monday after expected approval by the EU’s 25 member countries.

The newspaper said it obtained a copy of the draft resolution, which includes increased access to the EU market, security cooperation, closer scientific and cultural ties and promotion of trade and investment.

The EU also will offer ”international guarantees” on the war against terror and security issues such as Iran.

EU Funds Salaries of Gaza Civil Servants Who Stay at Home

Wednesday, December 11th, 2013

European Union money for the Palestinian Authority includes of millions of dollars for salaries civil servants who don’t show up for work, according to  the European Court of Auditors (ECA)., the Luxembourg-based body which describes itself as the ‘’Guardians of EU finances.”

The amount of EU funding to the Palestinian Authority between 2008 and 2012 reached more than $1.5 billion. The ECA called for an “overhaul” of “a number of aspects of the current approach,” but the official Palestinian Authority WAFA site somehow concluded that the report cleared the Palestinian Authority of corruption.

“A considerable number of civil servants in Gaza are being paid without going to work and providing a public service,” said EU Auditor Hans Gustaf Wessberg. Spot checks of 10 civil servants revealed that four were not working and at on office, only 35 of 125 employees were working.

He denied reports that the EU is funding salaries of Palestinian Authority terrorists who are in Israeli jails. ‘’No EU money goes to anybody suspected of terrorism,’’ Wessberg said, but it is a matter of how one looks at the overall picture. Obviously, EU funds for other  outlays free money for paying terrorists.

Kerry Riding a Loaded Freight Train to Run Over Israel

Wednesday, December 4th, 2013

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is coming to Israel Thursday night with a one-two knockout punch that puts on the table American plans for Israel’s security in a future Palestinian Authority state.

In addition, Israel has agreed to another American project to would further pave the way for increasing de facto Palestinian Authority sovereignty in areas officially control by Israel and where Jewish communities’ future existence will be threatened.

The Obama administration repeatedly has promised it will not force on Israel an agreement with the Palestinian Authority, but in practice, that is exactly what it has done by the old trick of publicly announcing suggestions and leaving the foreign media and international community to condemn Israel for not accepting them.

The Palestinian Authority then threatens to end the “peace talks” and go the United Nations, leaving U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s diplomatic knife in Israel’s back.

Retired Gen. John Allen, one of President Barack Obama’s “special envoys” to the Middle East who acts as the President’s Israeli defense minister in absentia, reportedly has come up with plans based on his expert knowledge of exactly what Israel needs to defend itself.

Until last year, Allen commanded American forces in Afghanistan, which apparently gives him an excellent understanding of the Jewish state’s security needs.

A host of Israel political leaders and military officials have made it clear that Israel must maintain a military presence in the Jordan Valley in any future Palestinian Authority state.

But Israel’s leaders have said a lot of things, such as dismissing any possibility that it would release mass murderers to bring back the bodies of fallen soldiers, or the return of one live soldier, or for the privilege of sitting down face to face with Palestinian Authority officials whose idea of negotiations is that Israel can decide whether to accepts its demands today or tomorrow.

Details of Allen’s have not been leaked, but given the Palestinian Authority’s rejection of Israel’s deploying soldiers in the Jordan Valley, Allen is bound to come up with something that will sound super-sweet but will end up as poison, which can be smelled in statements from Washington.

One U.S. official said Allen “has been working closely on the ground with his Israeli counterparts,” The Associated Press reported. The official said the Americans realize that security is “paramount” as Israel contemplates taking “calculated risks for peace.”

Been there, done that.

The United States does the “calculations, the Israeli government takes the “risks” and Israeli families pay the price at the cemetery.

A U.S. official traveling with Kerry said the ideas were not a “plan” that could be accepted or rejected.

Sure.

The Haaretz daily said that Allen will tell Netanyahu of his security plans when they meet on Thursday. Kerry then will go to Ramallah, leaving Israel holding the blame bag if it dares to say “no.”

The Associated Press reported that “the American thinking is that if Israeli security concerns can be met, other issues, such as borders, will then fall into place.”

In other words, the U.S. State Dept. has come up with another formula for peace and love in the Middle East. It wasn’t long ago that the United States knew – it did not think, but it knew – that settling the Palestinian Authority-Israeli dispute would open up the locks on all of the regions problems, such as Egypt.

And Syria.

And Iraq.

And Iran.

Kerry’s arrival in Israel Wednesday night follows European Union warnings that if Israel does not agree to a peace pact, the EU will increase its boycott of settlements and will stop funding the Palestinian Authority.

PA Not Part of International Olive Council this Year

Monday, December 2nd, 2013

Opposition by Germany and Britain to the Palestinian Authority bid to join the International Olive Council has forced the Palestinian Authority to freeze their application in applying to become a member state of the intergovernmental Madrid-based organization.

The Palestinian Authority Foreign Ministry in Ramallah prepared the application this past summer in order to be voted upon at the annual olive council meeting held in Madrid last week.

According to European diplomatic sources, cited in Haaretz, British and German representatives claimed that letting the Palestinians join the council could sabotage current Israeli-Palestinian talks led by the United States.

Resuming peace talks were made on the condition that Israel’s release of Palestinian prisoners would be done in exchange for the Palestinian Authority’s promise not to join various UN organizations and not to address The Hague’s International Criminal Court (ICC).

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has committed to continue talks for a nine-month period, during which time the Palestinian Authority has pledged to avoid any diplomatic actions against Israel. Thus far, Israel has released 52 Palestinian prisoners, many of whom were convicted of murdering Israelis, out of the 104 Palestinian prisoners who will be freed as talks progress.

Germany and Britain are the member states of the European Union’s joint delegation to the International Olive Council, which is made up of 16 states in addition to the EU that produce olives and olive oil. If the states within the EU delegation are unable to reach a consensus, then the EU delegation must abstain from voting.

In any case, the Palestinians realized that the European Union would not vote in their favor for the olive council membership and preferred not to suffer diplomatic failure. Palestinian officials told Haaretz that the PA had instead decided to postpone their application to a more “opportune moment.” The next International Olive Council annual session will be held in November 2014.

Israel, EU Agree on R&D Project, Despite Settlement Guidelines

Wednesday, November 27th, 2013

Israel and the European Union have agreed on a compromise under which Israel will join the Horizon 2020 research and development project despite new EU guidelines on Jewish settlements.

Following months of negotiations, the agreement was reported Tuesday night in the Israeli media after an impasse was reached on Monday night.

The project is expected to provide about $1.9 billion over several years to Israeli researchers and universities. Israel has taken part in the EU program since 1996.

In July, the European Commission announced new guidelines making Israeli entities and activities in Judea and Samaria, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights ineligible for EU grants and prizes beginning on Jan. 1.

The agreement allowing Israel to sign came after telephone negotiations between Israeli Justice Minister Tzipi Livni and EU Foreign Minister Catherine Ashton, an unnamed Israeli official told Haaretz.

EU Parliament Members Urge ‘Rethink’ on Judea and Samaria

Thursday, November 14th, 2013

European Union’s foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton’s attempt to ban funding of projects in Judea and Samaria, the Golan Height and areas of Jerusalem claimed by the Palestinian Authority is being challenged by 27 Members of the EU Parliament.

Aston’s guidelines are to go into effect January I, but Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has threatened to pull Israel out of the seven-year  EU Horizon 2020 project to which Israel is committed to contribute approximately $800 million.

In a letter addressed to Ashton, the MEPs, from across the political spectrum, urged the EU Commission, the EU’s executive arm, to reverse or at least soften the guidelines, the European Jewish Press reported.

Israel has taken part in EU research and development programs since 1996, including over the last seven years in which 1,584 Israeli researchers took part in more than 1,300 projects and received a total of more than $800 million in grant money.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/eu-parliament-members-urge-rethink-on-judea-and-samaria/2013/11/14/

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