EU will respond to Trump plan after Israeli election

Foreign affairs chief says EU won't pass official resolutions on Trump's peace plan until "after Israeli elections".

Elad Benari ,

Josep Borrell
Josep Borrell
Reuters

The European Union will not pass any official resolutions on US President Donald Trump's peace plan for Israel and the Palestinian Arabs until "after Israeli elections," the EU’s foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell said on Monday.

"We had an exchange of views about the Middle East peace process following the presentation of the US proposal," Borrell stated after a meeting of the organization's foreign ministers in Brussels, according to Haaretz.

"We briefly discussed how best to relaunch a political process that is acceptable to both parties and how best to defend the internationally agreed parameters, equal rights and international law," he added.

Borell said that several foreign ministers had requested the issue to be added on the agenda of their March meeting "with a specific discussion and some resolutions."

"We’ll do it. After Israeli elections," he stated.

On Sunday, Haaretz reported that a group of EU member states, led by Luxembourg, was planning to put forward an initiative at Monday's meeting to give joint EU recognition of a Palestinian state in response to the Trump plan.

The representatives of these countries expressed a clear stance on the subject at Monday's meeting, and there is concern in Israel that some could push for recognition of a Palestinian state on their own, even if the European Union as a whole doesn’t decide to do so.

The EU itself does not recognize an independent Palestinian state. It has taken the position that the issue of Palestinian statehood should be settled through negotiations between Israel and Palestinian Arabs towards a two-state solution.

Palestinian Authority officials have been pressuring countries to officially recognize “Palestine”, in a move meant to bypass direct peace talks with Israel.

While several European countries have recognized “Palestine” in recent years, those moves were symbolic ones that have little, if any, actual diplomatic effect.

Borrell criticized Trump's Middle East initiative after it was released, saying the Israelis and Palestinians should directly negotiate a two-state solution based on the borders that existed before the 1967 Six Day War.

The US plan "departs from these internationally agreed parameters," Borrell said in a statement in which he added the European Union was "especially concerned" by Prime Minister Binyamin’s Netanyahu's push to apply sovereignty to Judea, Samaria and the Jordan Valley.



top