The EU Ambassador to Israel, Andrew Standley, addressed the media at a press conference held in Jerusalem on Monday June 3 2013 before his retirement. He said that the EU was “committed to the security and economic success of Israel” and that the Union felt fully justified in labeling settlement products, what means products made by jewish colonists in the occupied West Bank.
He said that he himself was “aware of the emotional aspect of labeling goods from the settlements, and of Germany’s declaration which supports such labeling.”
He added: “The EU labels products from the West Bank in order to allow consumers to identify products that come from the settlements and the other areas of conflict. For the past decade the EU has been labeling products from the settlements and the Israeli government has not protested. The Israeli government has approved this for the last decade”.
Mr. Standley expressed his opinion about the future in Palestine: “Long-term settlements in the West Bank are not conducive to security, only a two-state solution is. Bottom line, Israel already accepted relinquishing the entire West Bank in 1947. This means that Israel has already agreed to the partition of the land, saying yes to Haifa and no to Hebron, so today I advise the jewish state to choose between Hebron and Haifa”.
He added: “Israelis would have to make a choice if they want a limited Jewish state within the 1948 armistice lines, or a watered-down, democratic state for all peoples, Palestinians and jews in Palestine”, or what he labeled, in his own words, as “the entire land of Israel”.
Since the opening of the Delegation in 1981, relations between the European Union (EU) and Israel have been greatly strengthened and broadened to cover a wide range of areas and issues, thanks in particular to the European Neighbourhood Policy and the bilateral EU-Israel Action Plan approved in December 2004.
One of the Delegation’s main objectives is to provide information about this expanding relationship. I trust that the Delegation’s website will be used by many interested users in Israel and throughout the world as a useful tool to access information on EU-Israel relations and as a gateway to a better understanding of the EU in general.
The following pages will provide you with information on the work of the Delegation, the various EU-Israel bilateral agreements currently in force, projects carried out with EU support in Israel, information on bilateral trade and on scientific cooperation as well as information on the European Union. To keep up to date with latest developments in Israel and the region, click into the News section or follow events inside the EU in ‘Top News from the European Union’. Read the latest edition of our ‘Europe in Israel online’ newsletter or click on ‘Newsletter subscription’ to receive it to your email address.
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