Sunday, September 20, 2009

EU Ready to Use All Instruments at its Disposal to Support Comprehensive Peace

Curt Here...

Thanks to Pastor Brian for finding the statement posted below.

The statement from the EU President posted below on the Arab-Israeli conflict clearly shows that the EU is ready to use everything at their disposal to enforce a comprehensive peace in the Middle East, including existing agreements and instruments.

From the statement, "The EU stands ready to use all instruments at its disposal in order to support comprehensive peace in the Middle East, including a lasting settlement for the conflicts between Israel and Syria and between Israel and Lebanon."

If you are familiar with the European Neighborhood Policy (ENP), then you would know that each country that has signed on to the ENP, have individual ENP action plans. These action plans are different and tailor made for each country, but all of these plans fall under the same ENP umbrella agreement. Each of the action plans have in them provisions requiring each country to make progress towards peace in the Middle East and within the Neighborhood. The ENP is funded through a funding instrument called the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI).

This is what makes the ENP so powerful. All of the countries are 2 1/2 years into the 7 year ENP agreement and are now used to the money that flows through it. If the EU tells Israel that it is going to use the ENP as leverage towards peace in Middle East and then use this agreement as the reason for enforcement, this would be, to say the least, highly prophetic.

Here is the language in Israel’s European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument.

Executive Summary

This Country Strategy Paper (CSP) for Israel covers the period 2007-2013. Support to Israel over that period will be provided under the new European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI)which is being established to provide assistance for the development of an area of prosperity and good neighbourliness involving the European Union and the partner countries covered by the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP).1 Under this new instrument, specific assistance is provided to all partner countries that have concluded an Action Plan with the EU to support the implementation of the Action Plan.

Funding levels for Israel under the national ENPI envelope are currently estimated at €14 million for the period 2007-2013. Israel will also be eligible under the ENPI regional and cross-border cooperation programmes. Given the scope of the allocation, the most suitable approach seems to be to concentrate on support activities for the implementation of the Action Plan priorities, mainly in the form of institutional cooperation.

The principal objective of EU-Israel cooperation is to develop an increasingly close relationship between the EU and Israel, going beyond previous levels of cooperation, including a significant level of economic integration, and a deepening of political cooperation including in the area of foreign and security policy and in the resolution of the Middle East conflict and on human rights issues, on the basis of the EU-Israel Action Plan.

EC support over the period covered by this strategy will aim at supporting the attainment of the above policy objectives. Under the National Indicative Programme (NIP) 2007-2010 this translates into support for those areas identified as priorities of mutual interest, based on the ENP Action Plan.

You can find this here...

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Presidency Statement on the Arab-Israeli conflict

The European Union remains committed to a comprehensive settlement of the Arab-Israeli conflict. We strongly support the United States’ vigorous pursuit of a two state-solution and call on the parties to fully engage in resumed negotiations to create a viable Palestinian state on the basis of the June 1967 borders, living side by side in peace and security with the State of Israel.

We urge Israel to immediately end all settlement activities, including in East Jerusalem. We urge the Palestinian Authority to continue in its efforts to improve security and the rule of law, building on the achievements reached so far. The EU urges all donors to deliver on past commitments and to enhance their efforts to assist the PA in a spirit of equitable burden sharing. We reiterate the urgency of a durable solution to the Gaza crisis and call for the immediate and unconditional opening of crossings for the flow of humanitarian aid, commercial goods and persons to and from Gaza.

Underlining the importance of the Arab Peace Initiative, the EU invites Israel and all Arab countries to take confidence building measures to create an atmosphere conducive to conflict resolution. The EU stands ready to use all instruments at its disposal in order to support comprehensive peace in the Middle East, including a lasting settlement for the conflicts between Israel and Syria and between Israel and Lebanon.

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