MEPs write to EU leaders on Gaza
Read the letter sent by MEPs to European Parliament President Martin Schulz, Commission President José Manuel Barosso, High Representative Catherine Ashton, and Council President Van Rompuy.
Dear President Schulz, President Barroso, High Representative Ashton and President Van Rompuy,
A humanitarian disaster in Gaza has been unfolding before the eyes of the world. The EU cannot remain inactive. It has to respond to the mounting public opinion demanding an end of this tragedy and abiding by its own legislation as outlined in Article 2 of the EU-Israel Association Agreement.
An immediate ceasefire is needed that would put an end to the killing and suffering of even more civilians, many of them children, that would allow immediate access to Gaza of humanitarian aid, particularly to provide for urgent medical needs. In this regard the Council Conclusions on the Middle East Peace Process, of 22 July 2014;
"call for the immediate, sustained and unconditional opening of crossings for the flow of humanitarian aid, commercial goods and persons to and from the Gaza Strip, in line with UNSC Resolution 1860 (2009)."
We welcome the fact that the Council reiterated its position;
"that the only way to resolve the conflict is through an agreement that ends the occupation which began in 1967", and that "the preservation of the viability of a two-state solution" must remain a priority".
We equally welcome that;
"Reaffirming its commitment to implement the Council Conclusions of May and December 2012 as well as the applicability of international human rights and humanitarian law in the occupied Palestinian territory, the EU calls on Israel to halt continued settlement expansion, including East Jerusalem, especially in sensitive areas such as Har Homa, Givat Hamatos and E1, which severely threatens the two state solution;
to put an end to settler violence;
to the worsening of living conditions for Palestinians in Area C;
to demolitions - including of EU funded projects - evictions and forced transfers; and;
to increasing tensions and challenges to the status quo on the Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif."
Consequently, we the undersigned Members of the European Parliament, urge you to act:
- to reach an immediate cease-fire;
- to secure access to humanitarian aid and urgent medical supplies in the Gaza Strip;
- to take actions for Israel to respect international human rights and humanitarian law as stipulated by Article 2 of the EU-Israel Association Agreement;
- to demand that Israel puts an end to all actions threatening the two-state solution;
- to give your explicit support to the Israeli writers and journalists who are fighting against the policy of their government, in great isolation.
The Members of the European Parliament:
Martina Anderson,Neoclis Sylikiotis, Iosu Juaristi Abaunz, Marina Albiol, Margrete Auken, Fernando Maura Barandiarán, Beatriz Becerra, Malin Bjork, Lynn Boylan, Matt Carthy, Maria Dolores Lola Sanchez Caldentey, Nessa Childers, Javier Couso, Pal Csaky, Dennis De Jong, Fabio De Masi, José Inácio Faria, João Ferreira, Eleonora Forenza, Katrougalos Georgios, Rina Ronja Kari, Katerina Konecna, Kostadinka Kuneva, Merja Kyllönen, Patrick Le Hyaric, Paloma López, Sabine Lösing, Marisa Matias, Curzio Maltese, Fernando Maura, Louis Michel, Anne-Marie Mineur, Liadh Ní Ríada, Younous Omarjee, Pablo Echenique-Robba, Teresa Rodríguez, María Pagazaurtundúa Ruiz, Sofia Sakorafa, Jordi Sebastià, Lidia Senra, Barbara Spinelli, Bart Staes, Josep Maria Terricabras, Ángela Vallina, Marie-Christine Vergiat, Miguel Viegas, Francisco Sosa Wagner, Gabriele Zimmer, Inês Zuber
Reponse letter from High Representative Catherine Ashton