EJJP calls on European Union to suspend the EU-Israel Association Agreement, following the request of the European Parliament

March 23, 2003

Avec le soutien de – with the support of :

Heinrich Böll Foundation

Commissariat Général aux Relations Internationales (CGRI)

Appeal to the European Council

Meeting in Brussels on March 13, 14 and 15, the Network “European Jews for a Just Peace”, a Federation of seventeen Jewish European organisations and some individual participants, calls on the European Council to follow up the resolution adopted by the European Parliament on 10 April 2002, pt D. 8. requesting the E.U.-Israel Association Agreement to be suspended until Israel agrees to conform to the terms of that agreement.

The « Euro-Mediterranean Agreement establishing an association between the European Communities and their Member States, the one part, and the State of Israel, the other part », published in the Official Journal n°L147 of 21 June 2000, specifies (art.2) that «Relations between the Parties, as well as all the provisions of the Agreement itself, shall be based on respect for human rights and democratic principles, which guides their internal and international policy and constitutes an essential element of this Agreement».

In fact these rights and principles are being daily violated in many different ways in the Palestinian occupied territories – not to mention the occupation itself, and the colonisation — destruction of houses, collective sanctions, blockades of towns and villages which prevent pupils and teachers from reaching their schools and universities, land confiscations, extra-judicial executions, arbitrary detentions without charges, constraints on the free movement of goods and people that literally asphyxiate the Palestinian economy and also prevent any possibility of organizing elections despite the wish of the international community, of the European Union, of the Palestinian people and of Israel itself…

And this Agreement is also violated in that Israel, deliberately, doesn’t allow to distinguish between goods effectively produced in Israel and those in the illegal settlements in the Palestinian occupied territories. The latter profit from the preferential custom tariffs to which they’re not entitled.

In parallel, the Network “European Jews for a Just Peace” calls on the European authorities to use their influence and exert pressure to bring the parties to the conflict back to the negotiating table without preconditions as insistently requested by the Israeli and Palestinian peace movements.