Sinn Féin - On Your Side

EU member states must flex political muscle with Israel

12 January, 2009

Speaking today in the EU Parliament on Israel's continuing military offensive in Gaza Sinn Féin Dublin MEP Mary Lou McDonald told fellow MEPs that EU member states can no longer stand by and allow Israel to ignore their calls for an end to its military offensive in Gaza.


Speaking in Strasbourg the Dublin MEP said:


"By standing by and refusing to absolutely condemn the deepening Israeli military offensive in Gaza the EU has failed the people of Palestine. To date international responses to the crisis including those from the EU, US and UN have been inept and have failed make any impact on Israel's action in Gaza.


"With each day that passes the people of Europe look on with increasing outrage and horror as the people of Gaza are subjected to Israel's brutal military assault that has left nearly 900 dead, a third of whom are children.


“The EU can no longer stand by and allow Israel to ignore the international community´s   calls for the violence in Gaza to stop. Member states have a moral obligation to flex the full extent of their diplomatic and political muscle with Israel to end the violence. Tip toeing around the Israel administration has never worked. Tough words need to be accompanied by tough action.


"Israel needs to know there are political consequences to its actions in Gaza. It is on this basis that I am again calling on all MEPs to demand that the Euro Med agreement and all preferential trade agreements between the EU and Israel be immediately suspended.


"Equally MEPs must resist any attempt to  upgrade relations between the EU and the Israeli state which lays siege on Gaza and brutalises the Palestinian people. The rhetoric of human rights, so often espoused in this chamber, must now be honoured in word and action." ENDS

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