I chanced upon this article dated 16.12.11 in the EU Observer. I was shocked by it but shouldn’t have been. It is one thing to the EU to tell Turkey what it must do to gain membership in the EU. It is another thing to try to force Israel to be like them when we are not applying for membership. Besides who would want to be like the European countries.
BY ANDREW RETTMAN
BRUSSELS – EU countries have raised a red flag on Israel’s treatment of its Arab minority in a complaint that touches the heart of its identity as a “Jewish state.”
The deputy heads of EU embassies in Tel Aviv put forward their concerns in a 27-page-long internal report sent to the European Exernal Action Service (EEAS) earlier this month.
Israel links EU support for Palestinians to anti-Semitism
25.05.11 @ 09:32
BY ANDREW RETTMAN
BRUSSELS – Israeli finance minister Yuval Steinitz has said that select EU countries’ support for Palestine’s plan to seek full UN membership is linked to ancient anti-Semitism.
The contents were first revealed by Israeli daily Haaretz on Friday (16 December) morning. EUobserver has also seen the “Conclusions” and the “Recommendations” parts of the paper.
The Conclusions were endorsed by all 27 member states. The Recommendations were cut from the final draft because some EU countries objected to the content.
“We should see Israel’s treatment of its minorities as a core issue, not second tier to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. We should support the vision for Israel of its founders: Israel as a homeland for the Jewish people, in which all its citizens have equal opportunities and are treated equally under law,” the Conclusions say.
“In our dialogue with the government of Israel … we should emphasise that addressing inequality within Israel is integral to Israel’s long-term stability,” they add.
“We should make the following points clear … that we do not believe that recognition of Israel as a Jewish state should detract in any way from the vision of equality for all its citizens enshrined in its founding documents; that it is in the interests of all Israelis to demonstrate that Israel is not only Jewish and democratic, but tolerant and inclusive.”
The controversial Recommendations made 16 points.
One idea was to nominate a “lead EU country” to monitor “potentially discriminatory draft legislation” and to “agree that approval at the second reading of such legislation [in the Knesset] should trigger an EU demarche.”
They also suggested “high-level EU visitors see the Israeli Arab community and its leadership when they visit.” They added that EU countries should “lobby” the Israeli government to employ at least 10 percent Israeli Arabs in its civil service and to promote Arabic teaching in schools.
EU foreign relations spokeswoman Maja Kocjanic confirmed the text is authentic.
“It was prepared for us in order to reflect how we might engage constructively with government and non-government interlocutors in Israel when dealing with an issue identified in the EU-Israeli Action Plan [a 2005 bilateral treaty] as a shared value – …read more