Sinn Féin MEP Martina Anderson has put forward two amendments to the Protocol being voted on next week in Strasbourg aimed at eliminating technical barriers to trade with Israel.
Martina Anderson said:
“Contrary to the Right-wing parties in the EU Parliament this Protocol is not simply about implementing what is already there but is in fact about upgrading relations with Israel, which could have the effect of allowing the importation of products produced in illegal Israeli settlement.
“The Protocol has been frozen from 2008 and there has been debate suggesting that it should be suspended for two years. It is possible that there could be an intervention from Council proposing that the Protocol should not include goods originating in the settlements.
“However, there is an opinion that even if council made such an intervention that it is merely an opinion and would not prevent the upgrade of relations with Israel which would give tacit legitimacy to these settlements and which we do not support.
“Therefore I have signed two amendments that would ensure that any upgrading of trade relations with Israel by the EU would declare that ‘the terms “lawfully placed on the market” and “lawfully traded” used in Article 5 of this Protocol do not refer only to requirements of a technical nature but that they refer also to the requirement not to recognize the legality of the Israeli settlements in established territories brought under Israeli administration since 1967 in violation of international law’.
“Owing to the circumstances of their production, along with the other MEP’s in the GUE/NGL grouping in the European Parliament, I will be doing all that I can to ensure that products produced in these illegal settlements do not benefit from this Protocol.”