Why has the Gaza Strip been excluded from the conversation on annexation? This question has haunted me for months, and upon the deadline for Israel’s bid to annex parts of the West Bank, it begs more attention.
It is clear that at this point, the precedent is set for real action to be taken against Israel for this move, but it is widely understood that it will take an insurmountable amount of pressure to be mounted against world powers for them to budge on the question of sanctions against Israel.
Nine years ago, Ehud Barak, then Israel’s defence minister, warned that the Jewish state faced a “diplomatic tsunami” if it did not come up with an initiative to move the Arab-Israeli peace process forward. Under Benjamin Netanyahu’s 11-year watch the opposite has happened. As the prime minister has steered Israeli politics ever further to the right, he has championed Jewish settlement in the occupied West Bank, demonised Palestinians and successfully buried mainstream Israeli debate about the concept of land for peace — for decades the internationally accepted foundation on which a lasting resolution to the conflict was supposed to be built.
Since Israel announced its plan to annex swathes of the occupied West Bank, the EU has only hypothesised on what steps the bloc may take in response. The most prominent of these could be the exclusion of Israel from the Horizon 2020 research grants. Other than this possibility (it is no more than that at this stage), which should have been done long before now in any case due to Israel’s perpetual violations of international law, the EU has tacitly approved Donald Trump’s deal upon which annexation is based, and will most likely restrict its collective response to rhetoric.
On 23 November 2019, EuroPal Forum and Middle East Monitor co-hosted a conference at the Holiday Inn Bloomsbury in London on the relations between Europe and Palestine. A first of its kind, the conference brought together individuals at the forefront of discourse on Palestine in
As the European Court of Justice (ECJ) rules that European Union countries must identify products made in Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory, MEMO and EuroPal Forum are hosting a conference to discuss the EU’s position on major issues related to the occupat