EU Needs Own Middle East Peace Plan Countering Trump’s, Borrell Implies
The EU High Representative on Foreign and Security Policy reportedly failed to get all EU member states to condemn Trump’s Middle East peace plan.
The European Union needs to come up with a Middle East peace plan of its own, according to the EU’s foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, who has made clear his opposition to the controversial Middle East peace plan of US President Donald Trump unveiled in January.
While criticizing profoundly Trump’s Middle East peace plan, the High Representative for Foreign and Security Policy of the European Union argued in favor of an EU initiative in the same area.
“I would like to talk to the EU foreign ministers about what ideas the Europeans have and what initiative we could take to move the peace process between Israel and the Palestinians forward,” Borrell said in an interview with German newspaper Die Welt on Friday, as cited by DW.
“All this will be difficult, but it is not impossible,” the EU foreign policy chief admitted, referring to the fact that the Union was far from united on the Middle East peace process, not to mention the further precondition that both the Israelis and the Palestinians would have to accept the EU as a mediator.
Borrell criticized Trump’s Middle East peace plan as giving Israel control over Jewish settlements on the West Bank and in the Jordan Valley.
“[I am] particularly concerned that Israel could annex the Jordan Valley and other parts of the West Bank on the basis of this plan,” the EU High Representative on Foreign Policy declared.
“This would be contrary to international law and UN Security Council resolutions,” Borrell said.
“It is not enough for the plan to be agreed with one country on the acquisition of new territories,” he added.
Borrell reiterated that the EU is in favor of a two-state solution with an equivalent exchange of Israeli and Palestinian land, and that, as far as the EU was concerned, the goal must be for Israel and an independent, democratic and viable state of Palestine to live side by side and in mutual recognition.
Trump’s Middle East peace plan, described by the US President as “the deal of the century”, has been widely criticized internationally for being too one-sided, and Palestinian leaders rejected it both before and after it was made public.
Earlier in February, Israeli media reported that Borrell had failed in attempting to get all EU Foreign Ministers to issue a joint statement condemning Trump’s Middle East plan, with at least six EU member states – including Austria, the Czech Republic, Hungary, and Italy – opposing and therefore killing his initiative.
(Banner image: Josep Borrell on Twitter)