Israel’s Seven Year Illegal Blockade of Gaza: A Gross Violation of the EU-Israel Association Agreement

 

europe-israelThe blockade has been criticized by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the United Nations Human Rights Council and other human rights organizations, a criticism that has been officially supported by United States administrations. In June 2010 Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the humanitarian needs in the Hamas-controlled area must be met along with legitimate Israeli security concerns. International institutions consider the blockade illegal.’

‘The legal framework for EU- Israel relations is provided by the EU-Israel Association Agreement signed in Brussels, on 20 November 1995, and following ratification by the 15 Member States parliaments, the European Parliament and the Knesset, entered force on 1 June, 2000.’

‘Among other things, the agreement states that the respect for human rights and democratic principles guides the internal and international policy of both Israel and the EU and constitutes an essential and positive element of the Agreement.’

CONSIDERING the importance which the Parties attach to the principle of economic freedom and to the principles of the United Nations Charter, particularly the observance of human rights and democracy, which form the very basis of the Association:

The EU does not recognise Israel’s sovereignty over any of the territories occupied by Israel since June 1967 comprise the Golan Heights, the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem and does not consider them to be part of Israel’s territory, irrespective of their legal status under domestic Israeli law. The EU has made it clear that it will not recognise any changes to pre-1967 borders, other than those agreed by the parties to the Middle East Peace Process (MEPP). The EU’s Foreign Affairs Council has underlined the importance of limiting the application of agreements with Israel to the territory of Israel as recognised by the EU.

There is but one option now open to the EU Commission – it must abrogate the EU-Israel Association Agreement on the grounds of the gross violation and breach of its specific provisions, by Israel, since 2007.