Home > Diplomacy, Jerusalem > Maariv’s Caspit: Israel frustrated with lack of US and UK support on Jerusalem

Maariv’s Caspit: Israel frustrated with lack of US and UK support on Jerusalem

RELATED POST — Weissglas in Yediot: Get real, the choice is between settlements (incl. E Jerusalem) and pariah status

Like a fourteen year old told to go to his room for the first time in his life.

Jerusalem officials expressed disappointment over the fact that the United States did not involve itself with the Europeans in any real sense, and that the frantic telephone campaign that the prime minister himself conducted over the past several days was fruitless.

[…]

As far as the Israeli Foreign Ministry is concerned, Great Britain’s conduct was also disappointing. “London’s positions are disappointing,” a high-ranking diplomatic official said. “It is cooperating with Israel on the Iranian subject, but when it comes to the Palestinians, it takes a hostile line.”

Full text below.

Europe divides Jerusalem

Ben Caspit, Maariv, December 7 2009

After a long period of frustration, Abu Mazen finally has an international diplomatic achievement: apparently, the Israeli-Palestinian battle over the EU Council of Foreign Ministers in Brussels today will end with a clear Palestinian victory.

A final draft of the agreement, which reached Jerusalem yesterday, indicates that the Palestinians will receive an unprecedented European statement. Late last night, a draft was passed that will evidently serve as the basis for today’s resolution. Barring any last-minute changes, it will include the following principles: Europe calls for the establishment of an independent, democratic and contiguous Palestinian state in the West Bank, the Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem. Jerusalem shall be the capital of both states. All settlement activity must be stopped, including in East Jerusalem, including natural growth. The European Union will recognize no changes in the 1967 borders unless both sides agree to them.

Regarding the decision for a temporary construction freeze, the European statement will include a sentence along these lines: The council views the decision for a temporary and partial construction freeze positively, as a first step. In addition, the proposed resolution will include other major pro-Palestinian statements such as: The settlements and the separation fence, house demolitions and the expulsion of Palestinians from their homes violate international law and constitute an obstacle to peace that threatens to make the idea of the two-state solution impossible. Europe has never recognized the annexation of East Jerusalem. The council calls for  opening the institutions that were closed in East Jerusalem and calls for an end to the discriminatory treatment of Palestinians in East Jerusalem.

Officials in Jerusalem who learned of the details yesterday said that this was a pro-Palestinian decision. However, they said that the statement about Jerusalem accords with the French proposal rather than the Swedish one, and that it is a conventional statement that reflects the traditional European position. Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon said yesterday in an interview on Israel Radio, “If Europe wants to continue to have a positive role in the efforts to move the peace process forward, it must not dictate preconditions to the parties and interfere in matters that must be discussed in negotiations. Doing so will cause damage and extremism in both parties’ positions.” A high-ranking Israeli official said yesterday that even though Israel garnered an accomplishment regarding Jerusalem, the resolution still includes extremely problematic elements, including the call for  reopening Palestinian institutions in Jerusalem, the statement that there must be no change in the 1967 lines, and other things. “In the end, this is another paper that will turn yellow on the shelves of Europe,” the official said, “but it is certain that this is an anti-Israel development. The lukewarm response to the construction freeze in the territories is also disappointing.”

Jerusalem officials expressed disappointment over the fact that the United States did not involve itself with the Europeans in any real sense, and that the frantic telephone campaign that the prime minister himself conducted over the past several days was fruitless.

Diplomatic officials in Jerusalem are angry mainly with Sweden, calling it “the most sanctimonious and hypocritical capital in Europe.” As far as the Israeli Foreign Ministry is concerned, Great Britain’s conduct was also disappointing. “London’s positions are disappointing,” a high-ranking diplomatic official said. “It is cooperating with Israel on the Iranian subject, but when it comes to the Palestinians, it takes a hostile line.”

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Categories: Diplomacy, Jerusalem

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