A Palestinian youth organization called “Palestinians for Dignity” issued a statement on Monday criticizing the European Union in its decision to upgrade relations with Israel despite statements acknowledging the atrocities of the occupation.
“It has come to light over the last week that the European Union (EU) has decided to upgrade its trade and diplomatic relations with the state of Israel despite the latter’s intensification of its occupation, colonization and apartheid against the Palestinian people,” Dignity for Freedom said in a statement.
The statement came a week after the EU decided to upgrade its trade and diplomatic relations with Israel in more than 60 areas, effectively reversing a freeze imposed after Israel’s war on Gaza.
Dignity for Freedom criticized EU’s latest move and described it as nothing less than outrageous, particularly given the EU’s continuous verbal criticism of Israel’s belligerent settlement plans. Dignity for Freedom assured that this “duplicitous behaviour epitomizes the reasons why the Palestinian people have no faith in the EU and that the Palestinian people will not accept only hollow words of condemnation.”
They also said that the EU must not be reminded that Israel “continuously flouts the will of the international community, remains in breach of UN Security Council resolutions, continues to violate its international law (including IHL) obligations, and daily abuses the human rights of the Palestinian people. Whether in its settlement policies, construction of the Apartheid Wall, its ethnic cleansing and ‘Judaization’ of Jerusalem and the Naqab (Negev), its criminal blockade of Gaza, its denial of the UN-sanctioned rights of the Palestinian refugees, its violation of the rights of Palestinian prisoners (including children), its demolition of Palestinian homes, and its countless other illegal policies, Israel is undoubtedly guilty of gross human rights abuses, deserving of condemnation and sanctions, not rewards and benefits.”
Dignity for Freedom called on the EU to immediately freeze the new upgrade of relations with Israel, suspend the existing EU-Israel Association Agreement until Israel complies with international law, investigate and halt the work of all European companies benefiting from Israel’s occupation and settlement policies.
Palestinians for Dignity was one of the groups which launched protests against President Mahmoud Abbas’ plans to host the Israeli vice premier in Ramallah for talks in June.