EU-US divergence over Israel
The EU and US policy towards Israeli-Palestinian peace process close come into a collision. While the Members of the European Parliament (MEP) call the EU and its member states to recognise Palestinian statehood, the US administration reportedly considers abandoning the UN Human Rights Council in disagreement over its policy towards Israel.
Led by delegation chair Neoklis Sylikiotis, the five MEPS visited Jerusalem and the West Bank on 20-24 February. In addition MEPs discussed the Israeli government’s recent decision to retroactively legalize settlements on the West Bank (pictured).
While in Jerusalem and the West Bank on 20-24 February, the cross-party delegation of MEPs met Palestinian Authority officials, communities at risk of forced displacement and civil society organisations battling Israel’s settlement expansion.
The delegation chair Neoklis Sylikiotis , a Cypriot member of the GUE/NGL group, described Israel’s recent decision to build 3,000 new homes in the West Bank as a “new violation of the rights of Palestinians to self-determination.”
Meanwhile, the US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley challenged the Human Rights Council for “breathtaking double standards” and “outrageously biased resolutions” against Israel, during a press conference after her first meeting with the UN Security Council.
According to the recent media reports, the US administration is considering to leave the UN HR Council, however the US delegation confirmed it is intention to work full force in coming months. The independent experts consider the leak about the US departure as a method of exercising pressure on the UN body to take more objective approach towards Israel.
President Trump is considering himself a good friend of Israel, confirming that his friendship goes beyond politics: his daughter Ivanka and his grandchildren are Jewish.
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