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Procédure : 2011/2828(RSP)
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PV 27/09/2011 - 13
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Compte rendu in extenso des débats
Mardi 27 septembre 2011 - Strasbourg Edition révisée

13. Activités de la semaine ministérielle à l'Assemblée générale des Nations unies, en particulier en ce qui concerne le processus de paix au Proche-Orient et l'Afrique du Nord (débat)
Vidéo des interventions

  Presidente. − L'ordine del giorno reca la dichiarazione del Vicepresidente della Commissione/Alto rappresentante dell'Unione per gli affari esteri e la politica di sicurezza sull'attività della settimana ministeriale presso l'Assemblea generale delle Nazioni Unite, in particolare il processo di pace in Medio Oriente e Nord Africa [2011/2828(RSP)].


  Catherine Ashton, Vice-President of the Commission/High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy. − Madam President, this year’s UN General Assembly took place at a time of enormous change and growing tensions in the world. The combination of the economic crisis, the Arab Spring and the stalled Middle East peace process creates a strong mix. I believe that Europe has to respond to the challenges, both at home and in the world.

Today, at your request, I am focusing my remarks on two issues: the Middle East process and the Arab Spring. I did, however, just want to say to Honourable Members that during the week in New York I met with Ministers from Russia, China, the United States, Brazil, India and Mexico – our strategic partners – and participated in many key events: on counter-terrorism, and a very important women’s event led by the President of Brazil.

I want to turn first to the Middle East peace process. As Honourable Members know, I visited the region seven times this year, each time with a single purpose: to promote a negotiated settlement of the conflict and to demonstrate the importance of Europe’s role. Over the summer period I have worked with the Quartet envoys and with the Arab League, and have been in discussions with the Prime Minister of Israel and the President of the Palestinian Authority, together with Prime Minister Fayyad.

It is clear that these efforts have succeeded in demonstrating that the European Union does have a role; that we are a player and a payer, with our financial commitment matched by our political strength. For too long we have been on the sidelines of the peace process. I have worked to achieve a greater role for Europe because I believe we are ideally placed as a friend of both parties.

I have said before that my vision for the European External Action Service is in a conflict prevention and resolution approach. We need to put that vision into practice. The dividends of peace are crucial for the future stability and prosperity of our neighbourhood.

Prior to arriving in New York, I participated in Cairo at the Arab League Follow-Up Committee discussions as we considered how best to support our objectives: two states; peace and security for both. Exploratory talks with the Palestinians, with the Israelis and with Jordanian leaders at the end of August led me to believe that the way forward was to put together what became known in New York as ‘the package’, various actions with the key objective of getting the Israelis and Palestinians together in talks.

During my September visit it became clear that a Quartet statement and possible General Assembly resolution, in addition to what President Abbas was seeking to do, could be part of such a package.

I met with many Arab leaders and was impressed by the desire they stated to end the conflict and their wish to bring stability and normality against a backdrop of potential unrest sparked by lack of progress. I believe this is also understood by Israeli leaders, who are fearful of seeing their country facing great uncertainty in the region, and fear for their own security.

I have impressed upon all I have met that this is a time to seek peace between the Israelis and the Palestinians on the basis, as we know very well in this House, of a negotiated agreement that will lead to the establishment of a Palestinian state as a core element of that agreement, and end the occupation that is so detrimental to the development of both peoples.

The United Nations speeches of President Abbas and Prime Minister Netanyahu certainly differed in rhetoric, but they both spoke about a desire for peace. Both speeches when you read them back focused on the need to go to negotiations and the wish to end the conflict.

In New York we worked to achieve a Quartet response to this, immediately calling on both parties to enter into negotiations within four weeks, to agree on the issue of territory and security within three months and to have made substantial progress within six months, with an agreement by the end of the year.

We do expect both sides to come forward and agree to negotiations. I believe that the European Union, including this Parliament, should play a central role in that process. We are well placed to do so, we are well respected in the region, and I believe we should have that commitment to stay closely involved, which, as I have made clear to all that I have met, I intend to do personally.

The Quartet has called for parties to refrain from provocative actions if negotiations are really going to resume and, more importantly, be effective. It is therefore with deep regret that I have learnt today about the decision to advance in the plans for settlement expansion in East Jerusalem, with new housing units in Gilo. This plan should be reversed. Settlement activity threatens the viability of an agreed two-state solution and runs contrary to the Israeli stated commitment to resume negotiations.

We have also called for a donors’ conference to support further the impressive achievements of the Palestinian Authority’s state building and we will consult on additional steps that will quickly lead to greater independence and sovereignty for the Palestinians over their affairs. Facilitating Palestinian trade is essential to support state-building and develop the economy. We propose concrete actions to open our markets to Palestinian agricultural and fishery products. I am glad that earlier today the European Parliament voted in favour of this important agreement, for which I thank you.

Gaza, too, remains a priority. As I have always said, the crossings must be opened to allow the flow of humanitarian aid, imports, exports and people. We need to enable children to go to school and ordinary people, and the younger generation in particular, to get on with and build the lives that they would want to have. I will continue to work to allow the economic recovery of Gaza, while of course remaining committed to ensuring the security of the people of Israel.

My second issue today is the Arab Spring. Since the demonstrations in Tunisia, the Arab Spring has touched every Arab state in the region. It is an event of truly historic proportions that will shape not only the future of that region, but our own future too. It is a revolution based on values: on justice, dignity and freedom.

Europe’s response to these events will speak more than any form of rhetoric about our real commitment to democratic principles. We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to build deep and lasting democracy and prosperity in the Southern Mediterranean. Doing so will require vision, perseverance and a team effort from all of Europe’s institutions. I look at my partner in this effort, Stefan Füle, as I speak! We need to stay focused and committed. The scale of the challenge requires a joined-up EU response. What we do on trade and mobility is as important to the overall success of our strategy as what we do on election-monitoring and supporting development.

Six months on, we still need to match words with delivery, and that is why I believe we need to re-energise the process. Last May I set out here my vision for North Africa and the Middle East, a vision of deep-rooted democracy, and the benefits of development that will come to it. My priority is delivery. After the revolutions, we face that growing sense of impatience and uncertainty, so we have to translate good intentions into results and assistance on the ground.

The process of change was never going to be easy and never going to be fast. Real change takes time and will be measured in years, not seasons. Our response, which began with the communication of 8 March, is built on the need to acknowledge past mistakes and to listen without imposing. We are doing exactly that, and it requires perseverance and sustained commitment. Success should translate into what I have called ‘deep democracy’.

Political transformation will only succeed with economic opportunity. In the short term the uprisings were motivated by economic hardships, and have perhaps made those hardships even more severe in some places. There is no single template for our support, there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’. We have to develop tailor-made policies in response to the needs identified by each country.

Engagement with Arab partners, particularly with the Arab League, is essential. We are working ‘with them, not at them’, which is why I was a prime mover in the establishment of the Cairo Group. But we are in a new era where dialogue between governments is not enough. Success requires engagement with and between societies. The European Parliament is unique in what it can offer to those in search of democracy in Tunisia and beyond, particularly now that constituent assemblies will become the key institutional actors. Building and sustaining political parties is essential. The experience in this House is unmatched.

In New York I participated in a high-level event on women in politics. I firmly believe that the continued central role of women in the Arab Spring is a key test of the strength and the extent of the changes. Women, together with the younger generation, were instrumental in the protests that toppled repressive regimes in Tunisia and Egypt, and they must remain central to shaping the reforms that follow. Deep and lasting democracy has to be for all people, not just one gender.

There was an encouraging signal on Sunday from perhaps an unexpected place, Saudi Arabia, when King Abdullah announced that women, as from next year, will be appointed to the Shura Council. They will also be able to vote and stand as candidates in elections in four years’ time. Many of us would have hoped to see women voting in this Thursday’s ballot, but this decision, if properly implemented, marks an initial step in advancing women’s participation in the political, economic and social life of that country.

The future of the Arab Spring depends on Tunisia and Egypt becoming success stories. What happens there as they move to elections and build a system of civil rights and democratic values will send messages everywhere else. Time is important: expectations are high, and we need to see visible results.

Tomorrow I travel to Tunisia with Stefan; we have set up a new EU task force for that country; it is taking place at a key moment to show our support just three weeks ahead of the first truly democratic elections, on 23 October. An EU Election Observation Mission is already on the ground. Given the highly political nature of the event and the key contribution from the European Parliament to support countries in transition, I have invited a delegation from this House to join me in Tunis tomorrow. I am extremely grateful that members of this House have agreed to come with me and participate fully in the work of the task force. I hope that this will be a model which we will replicate again in the future.

The purpose of the task force is to focus on some of the key issues which will have a direct impact on the lives of Tunisians: business, investment and the economy; social development and democracy. It will be unique in that it brings together not only our Tunisian partners but also our international financial institutions and private sector representatives. It will be the occasion for strong political messages, with the opening of negotiations for a new privileged partnership which reflects our shared ambition. It will also be an opportunity to better coordinate European and international efforts to focus on faster, more effective support. This tailor-made approach, based on decentralised and coordinated use of all our instruments, will then be used with other countries in transition to better identify needs and accelerate support.

In Egypt, where we expect the interim authorities will soon confirm the date of elections, it is urgent that the ruling military council continues to engage with political representatives and civil society to get a new electoral law for the new democratic era. Egyptian authorities have declined European and other international offers of involvement in direct election observation, but we will be working with them on other urgent measures, through the Instrument for Stability, to enhance the capacity of Egypt’s High Electoral Commission and help judges and poll workers to manage and effectively oversee these first free, fair and democratic elections as well as laying the basis for the organisation of future elections.

I know that many in this House are personally involved in strengthening the work of political parties in Egypt and I will, if I may, pay tribute to that work. I had great pleasure in meeting people who are engaged directly and I think it is well understood in Egypt how much this House is engaging there.

In some other countries in the region the authorities have sought to respond to calls for greater freedoms by intensifying their reform processes, some of which were already underway before the Arab Spring. In Morocco a new Constitution has been developed and approved overwhelmingly. This promises increased separation of powers and greater public accountability as well as improved respect for human rights. These are important, but they now need fast and sustained implementation.

In Jordan the Lower House endorsed 41 constitutional amendments, which included the establishment of a constitutional court and the creation of an independent commission overseeing elections. The new election laws and the political parties’ law will be debated by their Parliament in October. We urge them to continue with their reform, and we pay tribute to the work which is going on to try and achieve that within Jordan.

In the case of both Morocco and Jordan we will continue to build on the Advanced Status. In Morocco we are developing a new action plan focussing on the reform agenda. We will shortly launch a mobility partnership, and we will step up our financial and technical cooperation. I look to his House to help play its part in supporting the moves which are going on in both those countries.

We want to accelerate ongoing trade negotiations and prepare mandates for deep and comprehensive free trade agreements in Morocco, Jordan, Egypt and Tunisia. Approval by Parliament to the EU-Morocco Agreement on Liberalisation Measures on Agricultural Products, Fish and Fishery Products will send a signal of our desire to deepen our relationship in practical ways to the benefit of their people.

We recognise today that fighting continues in Sirte, Bani Walid and a few other pockets of resistance, but Libya is transitioning fast from a crisis to the creation of a democracy. Last week in New York I took part in the Friends of Libya meeting, where we were able to deliver a message of strong, continuing commitment. President Jalil has pledged to build a society based on tolerance and reconciliation and to uphold the principles of human rights.

The National Transitional Council and the international community also have to establish control over the large stock of weapons that the previous regime had amassed, to prevent them falling into the wrong hands. All this and more is essential for their transition.

In addition to our office in Benghazi, our new office in Tripoli is working closely with other partners under the coordination of the UN to determine the needs there. We know that Libya is a rich country, but we also know that they need support to develop their economy back to where it was; to help bring back the workforce which left Libya at the time of the crisis; to ensure that they are able to develop transparent ways of dealing with the resources that they will be receiving and the return of assets; to make sure that they have support in the security sector and to make sure that they are able to develop the links that they want to see, for example, the trade links they want to develop further with Europe, and the links which can help them develop a civil society which deserves that name. We are preparing projects to support civil society and women in Libya in particular.

May I also take note of Anna Gomes’ excellent suggestions to organise a visit of Libyan officials and civil society to the upcoming Spanish elections.

In Syria and Yemen we face crisis situations. I do not have to tell any honourable Member here of the brutal regime in Syria that remains unwilling to listen to its people and to change. We are pursuing our double- track approach by stepping up measures designed to undermine the regime’s support and, internationally, to achieve further isolation of the Syrian leadership. We have made many rounds of sanctions, and I was delighted to see in the Financial Times this morning the recognition that those sanctions are having an effect. But we are very clear in our message to the people of Syria, and during August all 27 Member States joined in to send a very strong message that it was time that President Assad stood aside and enabled the people of Syria to move forward.

Finally, Madam President, a word about Yemen. We have been strongly supporting the work of the Gulf Cooperation Council. You know that the unexpected return on Friday of President Saleh led to a very coordinated response out of New York from the GCC, the Arab League, the European Union, the United States and now the Security Council, all calling for violence to stop and for a rapid and concrete transfer of power. Nobody will be satisfied with another open-ended promise.

Honourable Members, I have tried to cover so much in this short presentation of the work which we are doing and the understanding that we have for the region. I look forward very much to your resolution and I continue to thank you for the support and advice that you have given as we move forward with what, I believe, is an increasingly clear strategy in uncertain times.

We hope for real and sustained progress both in Israel and Palestine, across North Africa and the wider Middle East. Further steps were taken in New York last week. We have to work together and continue to engage with all parties to make sure that we do have real cause for celebration when the General Assembly meets next September.


  José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra, en nombre del Grupo PPE. – Señora Presidenta, señora Alta Representante, señor Comisario, una aproximación ponderada al problema debería descansar sobre tres premisas: la aspiración legítima del Estado de Israel a su seguridad, la frustración del pueblo palestino y el estado de bloqueo en el que se encuentra el proceso de paz.

Y todo ello en un momento, señora Ashton, en el que la atención internacional está concentrada en la primavera árabe, en un momento en el que los Estados Unidos están condicionados por su horizonte electoral, en un momento en el que el Gobierno de Israel está dividido y casi sin margen de maniobra y en un momento en el que los radicales palestinos están expresando su satisfacción in crescendo ante la falta de resultados.

La pregunta ante esta situación, señora Ashton, es muy sencilla: ¿qué podemos hacer como Unión Europea? Y en este contexto, quiero decirle que este Parlamento, que tantas veces la ha criticado −yo el primero− tiene que expresar su reconocimiento por los esfuerzos que ha desplegado en El Cairo, en Ramala, en Jerusalén, en Nueva York y en Washington, buscando soluciones y pidiendo que la Unión Europea hable con una sola voz.

En política, señora Presidenta, lo que no es posible es falso. Y ante el anunciado veto de los Estados Unidos en el Consejo de Seguridad, el Presidente de Francia −como en la crisis de Georgia en el año 2008, o este año en Libia− ha propuesto una solución a media ladera, que es la solución vaticana.

Señora Ashton, ¿qué opinión le merece esta iniciativa? ¿Cree que puede ser apoyada por los Estados miembros? ¿Qué puede hacer la Unión Europea para que la solución de El Cuarteto pueda ser aceptada por los palestinos?

Señora Presidenta, si la Unión Europea quiere ser relevante y no declinante en la escena internacional, tiene que dar un paso hacia delante, tiene que moverse en la buena dirección y salir de su letargo.

No lo digo por usted, señora Ashton, que se ha movido mucho y se ha movido bien, pero tiene que proponer soluciones concretas, tangibles, contantes y sonantes, con un calendario preciso.

Y en ese contexto lo tiene que hacer ―y ésta es la dificultad del ejercicio―, por un lado, sin afectar a la dignidad ni menoscabar la dignidad de ambas partes y, al mismo tiempo, reconociendo los derechos inalienables que les asisten, a unos a vivir en paz y seguridad y a otros a constituirse como Estado.


  Véronique De Keyser, au nom du groupe S&D. – Madame Ashton, permettez-moi de revenir un instant sur ce qui s'est passé à New York, à l'Assemblée générale. Vous êtes passée un peu brièvement sur ces questions et je voudrais simplement vous dire aujourd'hui que mon groupe soutient la demande légitime du Président Abbas à l'ONU. Ces mots sont très simples.


Et avec eux, j'ai presque tout dit. Avec le regret aussi qu'il ait fallu aussi longtemps avant de voir aboutir cette démarche à l'ONU et l'espoir que l'Europe parviendra enfin à s'exprimer clairement et d'une seule voix sur ce sujet difficile.

Ne croyez pas, Madame, qu'au sein des groupes politiques, cette simple phrase: "Nous soutenons la demande du Président Abbas" ait rencontré immédiatement l'adhésion. La crainte d'un malentendu vis-à-vis d'Israël, dont la sécurité a toujours été pour nous incontestable. La crainte aussi d'un échec de l'initiative palestinienne au Conseil, suivi éventuellement d'une explosion de violences dans les rues arabes et d'éventuelles sanctions économiques contre l'Autorité palestinienne, des pressions américaines, tout cela a rendu notre décision difficile.

Et puis ce qui l'a emporté finalement, c'est une sorte d'honnêteté, de courage politique des parlementaires. Oui, les Palestiniens ont droit à cette adhésion. Soixante-trois ans après la reconnaissance de l'État d'Israël par cette même assemblée générale, douze ans après la déclaration de Berlin promettant de reconnaître l'État palestinien au moment opportun, ce moment est venu. Le moment est venu de soutenir ceux qui, en Palestine, ont choisi le camp de la paix, de la négociation, de la création d'institutions viables. Le moment est venu, car la Palestine rétrécit comme peau de chagrin. Ce n'est plus la Palestine de 47, ni celle des accords d'Oslo en 1993, ni celle non plus d'il y a encore quelques années; la politique du fait accompli du gouvernement israélien, les colonies, les spoliations agraires, le mur, tout cela gangrène la Palestine. Il y a urgence.

Aujourd'hui encore, la décision du gouvernement israélien de créer 1 100 nouveaux logements à Gilo rend la solution à deux États bientôt impossible. Le moment est venu; parce que le printemps arabe a suscité tant d'espoirs qu'il est impensable que l'Europe dise aux Palestiniens: "Ce printemps-là, il n'est pas pour vous. Attendez encore. Vous l'aurez, comme le dit la Déclaration de Berlin, au moment opportun." Des Palestiniens aujourd'hui meurent sans avoir connu autre chose que l'occupation. C'est pour toutes ces raisons que, sans réserve, les députés socialistes et démocrates appuient aujourd'hui la demande de Mahmoud Abbas à l'ONU. Que leur courage – parce que certains ont des histoires difficiles – que leur courage vous inspire, Madame Ashton, lorsque vous défendrez notre position auprès des gouvernements européens.

Il y a des moments où les valeurs européennes et ses engagements passent avant tout.



  Annemie Neyts-Uyttebroeck, namens de ALDE-Fractie. – Voorzitter, mevrouw de hoge vertegenwoordiger, commissaris, collegae, met haar kandidatuur voor lidmaatschap van de Verenigde Naties heeft de Palestijnse Autoriteit als het ware de knuppel in het hoenderhok gegooid, want nu volstaan mooie woorden niet langer. Naar alle waarschijnlijkheid zullen alle lidstaten van de VN, met inbegrip natuurlijk van de lidstaten van de EU, over afzienbare tijd, binnen enkele weken, hun houding terzake moeten bepalen.

De VS heeft al aangekondigd in de Veiligheidsraad haar veto te zullen stellen. Israël voert aan dat dit initiatief een unilaterale daad is dat strijdig is met de akkoorden van Oslo. Wat unilaterale initiatieven betreft doe ik namens mijn ganse fractie opmerken dat de bouw van de nederzettingen in bezet gebied, dat de verwoesting van honderden Palestijnse huizen, dat de bouw van een muur op Palestijns grondgebied eveneens unilaterale daden zijn, die daarenboven strijdig zijn met het internationaal recht.


Ik voer hier echter niet het woord om blamages uit te delen. Namens mijn fractie, mevrouw de hoge vertegenwoordiger, roep ik u en alle lidstaten op om eensgezind via contacten en onderhandelingen ervoor te zorgen dat de Palestijnen uiterlijk tegen het einde van de huidige sessie van de Algemene Vergadering van de VN een betere, ja zelfs de best mogelijke status kunnen verwerven in diezelfde Verenigde Naties. Ook wij vinden dat de Palestijnen recht hebben op een eigen staat. Tevens steunen we u bij uw inspanningen om een duurzaam vredesakkoord tussen Israël en Palestina te bereiken vóór het einde van het volgend jaar. De internationaal aanvaarde parameters van een dergelijk akkoord zijn bekend. Twee staten die vreedzaam naast elkaar leven, die elkaars bestaansrecht erkennen op basis van de grenzen van '67, die slechts kunnen worden gewijzigd op grond van een wederzijds akkoord, en met Jeruzalem als gedeelde hoofdstad. Ook moet er een humane oplossing worden gevonden voor de kwestie van de vluchtelingen.

Als dit niet zo'n ernstig onderwerp was, zou ik nu zeggen dat de Belgische collega's van dit Parlement, ikzelf incluis, weten dat het niet volstaat dat de parameters van een probleem bekend zijn, opdat er ook gemakkelijk oplossingen kunnen worden gevonden. De tijd dringt echter. De gewijzigde politieke omstandigheden in verschillende landen van het Midden-Oosten nopen tot een snelle oplossing, om nog te zwijgen over het menselijk leed dat nu al zo lang Israël en Palestina teistert. Mevrouw de hoge vertegenwoordiger, de Belgen zijn bezig een oplossing te vinden en ik hoop dat ook u in die geest daarin zult slagen. Wij wensen u alle succes toe.


  Charles Tannock, on behalf of the ECR Group. – Madam President, the ECR Group is indeed in favour of a negotiated two-state Israel-Palestine solution, on the basis of the 1967 borders, with land for peace swaps, and agreed on by both parties under the Quartet principles. President Abbas’s unilateral bid before the UN General Assembly is rushed and will do nothing to change the situation on the ground. A lasting solution can only be achieved through direct negotiations between the Palestinian Authority and Israel, which must, for its own part, stop the expansion of settlements on occupied territories. Moreover, statehood cannot be safely considered while Palestinian Gaza is governed by an EU-banned terrorist organisation, Hamas. It must also be remembered that Palestine is largely dependent on foreign aid, not only from the US and the European Union, but also from Israel, from whom it receives water and electricity, as well as assistance in collecting taxes.

Advocating unilaterally a recognised Palestinian Authority state without the UN Security Council’s approval, and only that of the General Assembly’s, risks sanctions from the US and Israel. The Israeli Prime Minister has, to his credit, now, without any preconditions, called for a return to direct talks. The ideal next step would be for the Palestinians, via the Palestinian Authority Government, to do likewise in order to achieve their state.


  Daniel Cohn-Bendit, au nom du groupe Verts/ALE. – Madame la Présidente, Madame la Haute représentante, il faut être clair aujourd'hui. Pour beaucoup de Palestiniens – et je reviens de Ramallah et des universités palestiniennes –, la solution à deux États n'est plus à l'ordre du jour. Les Israéliens n'en veulent pas. Ne nous mentons pas. Israël rend de plus en plus impossible la solution à deux États.

Nous défendons avec raison deux États. Mais il faut mesurer la frustration palestinienne. Il y a quelque chose que je ne comprends pas. Nous, nous soutenons comme les socialistes, l'initiative du Président Abbas à l'ONU. Sa phrase: "Au Moyen-Orient, il n'y a pas un État de trop mais il manque un État." sous-entend que l'État d'Israël est légitime mais qu'il manque l'État palestinien. C'est la phrase que nous pouvons tous signer. Ce que je ne comprends pas, Madame la Haute représentante, c'est que vous arrivez ici en disant: "Nous regrettons qu'Israël ait décidé, aujourd'hui, la construction de 1 100 logements." Au moins, condamnez-le! Et ne le regrettez pas! Dites que c'est impossible! Soyez claire!


Ensuite, même si nous sommes pour la reconnaissance de l'État palestinien tout de suite, dites au moins aux Israéliens que, s'ils continuent les constructions, vous pousserez les États européens à accepter immédiatement la reconnaissance de l'État palestinien. Faites-leur le même chantage que celui qu'ils vous font! Parce qu'ils vous disent: "On va négocier." et en même temps, ils continuent à occuper. Faites de la politique, Madame Ashton! La politique, ce n'est pas de la prière!

Aujourd'hui, il y a en Israël des centaines de milliers de personnes qui s'opposent à la poltitique de Netanyahu. Il faut que l'Union européenne, que nous, ici, nous soyons sincères. Monsieur Tannock, ne soyons pas cyniques.

L'État d'Israël a été reconnu unilatéralement par l'ONU en 1947 et c'était juste. C'était juste! Il n'y a pas eu de négociations avec les pays arabes. Et c'était juste! Monsieur Tannock, vous nous dites qu'Israël soutient les Palestiniens avec de l'eau. En fait, Israël vole l'eau des Palestiniens et la leur revend. Est-ce cela que vous appelez "soutenir". Arrêtons un peu avec notre cynisme européen!

Si, aujourd'hui, nous ne nous levons pas tous pour dire aux Israéliens: "Votre paix, c'est la paix d'Israël, c'est Israël pouvant s'intégrer dans un espace du Moyen-Orient, et même rêver des États-unis du Moyen-Orient où tout le monde aurait sa place", Israël ne comprendra pas que c'est dans son intérêt le plus intime qu'il y ait un État palestinien. Madame Ashton, vous devez dire aux Israéliens que des représentants palestiniens comme Monsieur Abbas ou comme le Premier ministre Fayyad, ils n'en auront pas d'autres et que, aujourd'hui, si le Hamas est contre l'initiative de Monsieur Abbas, c'est parce qu'il sait que cette initiative est la seule possible pour qu'il y ait deux États au Moyen-Orient.

Je trouve que votre position est trop faible. À aucun moment, vous n'avez dit ici comment vous pouvez obliger les Israéliens à négocier. C'est un mensonge incroyable! Ils disent: "On va négocier sans condition" parce que, sur le terrain, on est en train de changer les conditions, on est en train de continuer l'occupation. Dites aux Israéliens que soit ils arrêtent tout de suite les colonies, la colonisation et la construction, soit l'Union européenne soutiendra tout de suite la reconnaissance de l'État palestinien, maintenant, lors de la 66e réunion de l'ONU.

Si vous ne le faites pas, Madame Ashton, vous verrez que, dans six mois, il n'y aura pas de négociation. Dans un an, nous en serons là où nous en sommes aujourd'hui. Vous reviendrez ici et vous direz: "Il faut que les Israéliens et les Palestiniens comprennent que ce n'est que par les négociations qu'ils arriveront à la paix." Ils arriveront à la paix, Madame Ashton, si nous, nous disons aux Israéliens, pour défendre l'État d'Israël: "Too much is too much, enough is enough!". Si nous leur parlons comme cela, vous verrez que les choses changeront.


  Γεώργιος Τούσσας, εξ ονόματος της ομάδας GUE/NGL. – Κυρία Πρόεδρε, οι θέσεις, η πολιτική, η πρακτική, οι ενέργειες συνολικά των Ηνωμένων Πολιτειών της Αμερικής, της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης και, ιδιαίτερα, ορισμένων κρατών μελών της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης, ενισχύουν την ισραηλινή επιθετικότητα και έρχονται σε πλήρη αντίθεση με το δικαίωμα και τους πόθους του παλαιστινιακού λαού, με την θέληση των λαών για την άμεση αναγνώριση ανεξάρτητου παλαιστινιακού κράτους, μέλους του Οργανισμού Ηνωμένων Εθνών.

Η Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση και οι κυβερνήσεις των κρατών μελών της, σε αυτή την κρίσιμη φάση της πάλης του παλαιστινιακού λαού, κρίνονται στην πράξη και όχι από τις υποκριτικές διακηρύξεις, τις υπεκφυγές, τα ευχολόγια. Κρίνονται από την απαράδεκτη εξίσωση θύτη και θύματος που ενισχύει την ισραηλινή αδιαλλαξία. Καλούμε τους λαούς της περιοχής και, γενικότερα, τους λαούς όλου του κόσμου, να αντιταχθούν αποφασιστικά στα παιχνίδια που παίζονται στον Οργανισμό Ηνωμένων Εθνών. Να ακυρώσουν με την πάλη τους τις πιέσεις που ασκούνται στον παλαιστινιακό λαό από τις ΗΠΑ, την Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση, το Ισραήλ και τους άλλους ιμπεριαλιστές συμμάχους του. Να απαιτήσουν από τις κυβερνήσεις να πάρουν ξεκάθαρη θέση με τη στάση τους και την ψήφο τους στο Συμβούλιο Ασφαλείας και τη Γενική Συνέλευση του ΟΗΕ για την άμεση, χωρίς όρους και προϋποθέσεις, αναγνώριση παλαιστινιακού κράτους, πλήρους μέλους του Οργανισμού Ηνωμένων Εθνών, στα σύνορα του 1967 με πρωτεύουσα την ανατολική Ιερουσαλήμ.

Στηρίζουμε αποφασιστικά τη θέση για την άμεση απομάκρυνση των ισραηλινών κατοχικών δυνάμεων απ’ όλα τα παλαιστινιακά εδάφη, το άμεσο σταμάτημα των εποικισμών και την απομάκρυνση των εποίκων, την άμεση αναγνώριση ανεξάρτητου παλαιστινιακού κράτους, μέλους του Οργανισμού Ηνωμένων Εθνών.


  Bastiaan Belder, namens de EFD-Fractie. – Mevrouw de Voorzitter, na het Palestijnse propaganda-offensief in de Algemene Vergadering van de Verenigde Naties eind vorige week, is een terugkeer naar de rauwe realiteit van de Israëlisch-Palestijnse betrekkingen onvermijdelijk. Die werkelijkheid toont ons het elementaire gebrek aan een geloofwaardige Palestijnse vredespartner voor de Joodse staat Israël.

Voorop staat de constatering dat Mahmoud Abbas afgelopen vrijdag in New York niet voor Hamas sprak, noch voor Hamas handelde met de Palestijnse aanvraag voor een VN-lidmaatschap. Met de politieke uitwerking van de verzoening tussen Hamas en Fatah wil het blijkbaar niet vlotten. Terwijl de Europese Unie tegenwoordig vooral inzet op democratisering en eerlijke stembusgang in de Arabische wereld zien wij het omgekeerde proces op de Westelijke Jordaanoever. Welke legitimiteit bezit de Palestijnse Autoriteit nog na het inmiddels drievoudige uitstel van presidents-, parlementaire en locale verkiezingen.

Fundamenteel voor het Israëlische gebrek aan vertrouwen in Mahmoud Abbas als vredespartner is bovenal zijn systematische weigering de tweestatenoplossing publiekelijk in te vullen als een Joodse staat naast een Palestijnse. Een terechte eis aan zijn adres van mijn regering, de regering van Nederland, ook een EU-lidstaat waar ik trots op ben.


  Diane Dodds (NI). - Madam President, we are aware of the work that the High Representative has done over the past number of weeks in the Middle East and we are grateful, High Representative, for the efforts that you have expended. You do not dwell too much on the differences that were very apparent at the UN in the two speeches from President Abbas and Mr Netanyahu, but perhaps you should not also dwell on the differences in the Quartet, with the Quartet envoy quoted in the British press last week as describing the Palestinian move as being deeply provocative. I think we all welcome your insistence on a negotiated settlement, but I would like you to explain to this House just a little further how you see that actually coming about.

Hamas has opposed the UN move with almost a ‘too little, too late’ attitude. I would like you to explain to this House, and to give guarantees to this House, that the proposed cooperation between Abbas and the Hamas movement will not be translated into their presence at negotiations, given that Hamas is a terrorist movement, dedicated to the destruction of Israel and the genocide of Israeli citizens.

(The speaker agreed to take a blue-card question under Rule 149(8))


  Krisztina Morvai (NI). - With all due personal respect for you, Ms Dodds, would you kindly confirm that this is not the position of the non-attached Members as such, but only your personal position?

I am a non-attached Member myself and I do not consider Hamas a terrorist organisation. I am for a free and independent state of Palestine on the basis of human rights and self-determination of people. What is more, as a non-attached Member, I also stand for the suspension of the association agreements between the EU and Israel while the mass human rights violations by Israel against Palestine continue.


  Diane Dodds (NI). - Madam President, on a point-of-order as well as answering the blue-card question, can you confirm to this House that a blue card is a matter of asking a question to another Member and not a matter of making a political speech and putting forward one’s own view? I am very happy to confirm to this House that I do not speak for any non-attached Member other than myself. I am an independent Member in this House. I firmly stand for peace, democracy and absolute abhorrence of terrorist organisations like Hamas.

(The speaker agreed to take a blue-card question under Rule 149(8))


  Chris Davies (ALDE). - Madam President, I am sure that, in condemning terrorist organisations, the honourable Member will also want to condemn the Stern Gang. This was a terrorist organisation in the 1940s, fighting against British troops, and whose leader killed British troops. It was the number one terrorist organisation as far as the British Government was concerned. Its leader went on to become Prime Minister of Israel. Can we just remember that, however much we may deplore terrorist organisations, if we want to make peace, we sometimes have to talk with those who do not necessarily share all our views?


  Diane Dodds (NI). - I come from Northern Ireland. In Northern Ireland we have had 30 years of a terrorist campaign. We have had a terror organisation that has blown up people, killed people, including children, and gone into hospitals and tried to shoot people. We have had all of those things in Northern Ireland and, yet, some of those people who previously supported that terror organisation and that terrorist campaign find themselves in government. The reason that they were able to take part, and my party was able to take part in any kind of negotiation with those people, was the insistence that they give up terrorism and that they commit to exclusively peaceful and democratic means.

The world has changed. We can no longer bury our heads in the sand in this House and pretend that there are good terrorists and bad terrorists. Terrorist organisations should not be negotiated with.


  Ioannis Kasoulides (PPE). - Madam President, the official Palestinian demand for full membership of the United Nations will be examined in the weeks to come and negotiations will take place between members of the Security Council. Full membership status will be vetoed by the United States. If matters come to that point the Palestinians will address themselves to the General Assembly.

The Quartet has called for the resumption of direct talks on the Middle East process, to last twelve months, the first three to be devoted to borders and security. From the above, our previous position that the issue is not a clear ‘yes’ or a clear ‘no’ to the Palestinian request is the wisest approach.

Certain principles must guide the position of Parliament: the European Union must reach a unanimous position on the developments and play an important role in the negotiations that follow; any outcome must have due regard for the dignity of both sides; it must be taken into account that the status quo is unacceptable and all efforts should be towards the resumption of direct peace negotiations, as called for by the Quartet; we oppose any unilateral actions including new facts on the ground or the expansion of settlements.

It would be wrong at the present stage for our resolution to pre-empt the outcome of these diplomatic efforts. Any partisan approach endangers the negotiating process and weakens the possibility of the catalytic role to be played by the European Union.


  Hannes Swoboda (S&D). - Frau Präsidentin! Hier ist viel über Organisationen, über Terrorismus und anderes gesprochen worden. Aber in diesem Haus sollten wir auch manchmal an die Menschen denken, die von politischen Entscheidungen betroffen sind. Dazu möchte ich ausnahmsweise eine Anleihe bei der Literatur nehmen. Ich weiß nicht, wer von Ihnen das Buch von Amos Oz: Eine Geschichte von Liebe und Finsternis, gelesen hat. In diesem Buch beschreibt Amos Oz eine Szene aus dem Jahr 1947, die mich sehr berührt hat. Es war die Abstimmung in den Vereinten Nationen im November 1947, und alle Bürger Israels haben im Radio gehört – damals gab es noch kein Fernsehen –, wie diese Entscheidung fiel. Und er beschreibt – als die Entscheidung gefallen war und es eine Mehrheit der Stimmen für Israel gab – den Jubel in ganz Israel. Und Amos Oz verbessert sich dann und schreibt: Eigentlich nicht in ganz Israel, sondern im jüdischen Teil von Israel. Und was war mit den anderen?

Das Jahr 1947 wurde hier ja schon erwähnt. Ich frage immer wieder: Wie kann denn jemand vertreten, dass 1947 der Staat Israel gegründet wurde – Gott sei Dank! – und wir heute noch immer keinen Staat Palästina haben, obwohl die Entscheidung darin bestand, zwei Staaten zu gründen? Ist denn jemand in diesem Haus, der nicht auch den Palästinensern jene Freude gönnt, die 1947 die Israelis zu Recht gefühlt haben? Ich verstehe das bis heute nicht! Das ist keine Propaganda, da geht es nicht um Terrorismus, da geht es um die Menschen. Manchmal wird gefragt: Was haben die denn vom Staat? Die Juden damals im israelischen Staat, die diese Entscheidung mit Jubel zur Kenntnis genommen haben, hatten sehr viel von dieser Entscheidung der Vereinten Nationen.

Ich möchte Ihnen nichts anderes sagen, Frau Hohe Vertreterin, meine lieben Kolleginnen und Kollegen, als dass ich möchte, dass auch Palästinenser einmal, und zwar möglichst rasch, diese Freude empfinden können: Auch sie bekommen einen Staat – nach vielen Jahrzehnten des Kampfes und der Auseinandersetzung. Auch die Palästinenser haben das Recht auf einen eigenen Staat, so wie die Juden das Recht auf den israelischen Staat haben. Das sollte doch unser gemeinsames Ziel sein!



  Alexander Graf Lambsdorff (ALDE). - Frau Präsidentin, liebe Cathy Ashton! Das war sehr gute Arbeit auf einem sehr schwierigen Feld. Ich wundere mich ein bisschen über Daniel Cohn-Bendit, der Sie hier fünf Minuten lang anbrüllt – Sie sollten dort als Erpresserin auftreten, Sie sollen die Probleme sofort lösen – und anschließend den Saal verlässt. Ich finde, er könnte wenigstens Ihre Antwort abwarten.

Nein, das war sehr gute Arbeit auf einem sehr guten Feld. Vergessen wir nämlich eines nicht: Was hatten wir für Befürchtungen? Wir hatten die Befürchtung, dass die Europäische Union wieder ein Bild abgeben würde wie im Irak-Krieg oder wie jetzt bei Libyen, dass unsere Mitgliedstaaten nicht zusammenhalten würden. Deutschland und Frankreich hatten sich ja in einzelnen Statements vorher schon festgelegt.

Nein, die Europäische Union hält zusammen. Sie haben sich das Vertrauen der Israelis und der Palästinenser, also von beiden Seiten in der Region, erarbeitet. Das ist eine eigene diplomatische Leistung, und es stimmt, dass wir nur mit Vertrauen eine konstruktive Rolle spielen können. Es stimmt auch, dass wir als Europäische Union nur mit Einigkeit unserer Mitgliedstaaten eine konstruktive Rolle spielen können. Beides ist auf gutem Weg dank Ihrer Arbeit. Insofern a good job.

Lassen Sie mich auch noch drei wichtige Dinge nennen: Wir wollen eine einige Europäische Union – Sie sind auf einem guten Weg. Wir wollen eine Verhandlungslösung in den Vereinten Nationen, das sagt das Parlament auch in seiner Entschließung. Wir wollen keine Abstimmung mit Siegern und Verlierern. Das ist uns ganz wichtig.

Drittens muss es einen Zeitplan geben. Wir sagen, im Laufe der 66. Generalversammlung müssen die Palästinenser Ihren upgrade, ihre Anerkennung bekommen.

Wir gönnen den Palästinensern diesen Moment der Freude, lieber Kollege Swoboda. Allerdings will ich, wenn immer auf 1947 Bezug genommen wird, auch einmal sagen, dass unmittelbar danach, 1948, alle arabischen Nachbarn sofort über Israel hergefallen sind. Wenn wir die Anerkennung Palästinas als friedlichen Staat und einen Staat Israel in sicheren Grenzen haben, dann ist das Grund zur Freude für die Palästinenser, für die Israelis und für uns hier in Europa, die wir dabei eine konstruktive Rolle spielen könnten, auch Dank Ihrer Arbeit.


  Peter van Dalen (ECR). - Mevrouw Ashton, ik denk dat de eenzijdige stap die mijnheer Abbas vorige week heeft gemaakt, niet zo verstandig is. Het was ook niet voor niets dat het Midden-Oostenkwartet hem heeft opgeroepen daarvan af te zien. Ik denk dat die eenzijdige stap de vrede niet dichterbij heeft gebracht. Integendeel. Ik denk dat we deze kant niet op moeten om elkaar onder druk te zetten.

Wat nodig is, is dat we snel om de onderhandelingstafel komen en daar zet u zich ook terecht voor in. Daarin steunen wij u ook. Ook Israël heeft u laten zien die onderhandelingen serieus te nemen. Lieberman heeft verklaard dat hij om de tafel wil om het overleg te hervatten. Mijn verzoek is: laat dat mórgen gebeuren! Wij moeten om de tafel, alleen daar kunnen we de vrede bereiken en afspraken en resultaten maken. Vrede in het Midden-Oosten is voor de betrokkenen, én voor heel de wereld van levensbelang. Ik hoor graag van u hoe die kansen zijn om snel tot onderhandelingen te komen.


  Jill Evans (Verts/ALE). - Mr President, as the UN considers Palestine’s application for full state membership, I would join the many others across Europe and beyond in urging the EU and the EU Member States to support the Palestinian request.

Talks so far have failed. Of course, peace can only be achieved through negotiation. The recognition of the state of Palestine could lead to a freeze on the building of illegal settlements on the West Bank. It could lead to the end of the occupation. That is the way to ensure that further talks take place and that a two-state solution will be possible in the future. I agree with Mr Cohn-Bendit on the need for a stronger response to new settlement building.

The Palestinians have the right to be recognised as a state and that means that they would have full rights to participate in all international agreements and treaties. Amnesty International has raised concerns that the EU is promoting a compromise which would prevent recourse to the International Criminal Court. This would undermine both the ICC’s credibility and the principle of equal access to justice and reparation for all people. I hope that this is not the case and I would like to ask Baroness Ashton for her response on this.


  Patrick Le Hyaric (GUE/NGL). - Madame la Présidente, Madame Asthon, il est une donnée dont on ne parle pas: la majorité de la population israélienne, la majorité des Palestiniens, comme une majorité des représentants des États du monde soutiennent la proposition de Mahmoud Abbas de faire de la Palestine le 194e État membre des Nations unies.

Notre Parlement et vous-même, Madame Ashton, pouvons-nous continuer à nous féliciter, ici tranquillement au chaud, de ce qu'on appelle le printemps arabe et continuer encore longtemps à tergiverser sur la reconnaissance de l'État palestinien? Car tergiverser encore revient à gagner du temps pour tuer l'idée même d'un État palestinien.

Aucune diversion ne doit être possible cette fois. Ceux qui appellent subitement, ici même cet après-midi, à la reprise des négociations directes tentent de cacher que cela dure depuis des décennies sans résultat, que seuls les États-Unis sont maîtres du jeu et que le cadre comme la terminologie employée sont totalement biaisés.

En effet, on ne parle, à propos de la Palestine, que de territoires occupés. Cela laisse entendre que ces territoires peuvent être sans cesse discutés et disputés et que c'est à l'occupé de prouver que ses droits sont légitimes. Cette terminologie est totalement différente de celle de pays occupé.

Chers collègues, le moment politique est extrêmement important, il est même historique. Une résolution claire et nette de notre Parlement soutenant la proposition de Mahmoud Abbas serait un signal clair et net.



  Νικόλαος Σαλαβράκος (EFD). - Κυρία Ashton εκτιμώ ιδιαίτερα τις ενέργειες και τις πρωτοβουλίες σας στα πλαίσια των καθηκόντων σας στο υπό εξέταση θέμα. Χαιρετίζουμε την Αραβική Άνοιξη, καθ’ ό μέρος αποβλέπει στη δημιουργία συνθηκών εκδημοκρατισμού, αποκατάστασης σεβασμού των ανθρωπίνων δικαιωμάτων και, εν γένει, κοινώς παραδεκτών ιδεών. Φοβάμαι όμως ότι το κεντρικό θέμα που διατηρεί έκρυθμη την κατάσταση στη Μέση Ανατολή εξακολουθεί να παραμένει και είναι η πορεία σχέσεων Ιράν-Δύσης, η αραβοϊσραηλινή διένεξη αλλά και ο ισλαμικός φονταμενταλισμός, o φονταμενταλισμός αυτός, τον οποίο επιχειρεί να εκμεταλλευθεί ο τουρκικός νέο-οθωμανισμός. Υποστηρίζουμε ιδέες και θεωρώ ότι το αίτημα των Παλαιστινίων πρέπει να κριθεί στα πλαίσια του ΟΗΕ με καλή πίστη και μέριμνα προς τις δύο πλευρές. Σε κάθε περίπτωση όμως, πρέπει να καταλάβουμε όλοι στη Δύση ότι η Μέση Ανατολή, σαν πρόβλημα, πρέπει να λάβει λύση.


  Elmar Brok (PPE). - Frau Präsidentin, Hohe Beauftragte, Herr Kommissar, meine Damen und Herren Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Wir haben die Hohe Vertreterin/Vizepräsidentin der Kommission hier schon oft kritisiert. Ich muss heute sagen, dass das, was mit dem Quartett gerade unter ihrer Führung nach der amerikanischen Sprachlosigkeit zustande gebracht worden ist, meine große Unterstützung und meinen Beifall findet. Wir sollten versuchen, dies zu unterstützen. Sicherlich haben wir unterschiedliche Auffassungen im Haus, was da am Ende rauskommen soll. Aber ich glaube, in einem stimmen wir überein: Es muss eine Zwei-Staaten-Lösung geben, mit einem lebensfähigen palästinensischen Staat und einem gesicherten jüdischen Staat Israel.

Dadurch muss Bewegung hineinkommen. Ich glaube, dass jeder versucht, teils auch aus dieser Stresssituation heraus, wieder Bewegung hineinzubringen. Ob das gelingt, weiß ich nicht. Aber wenn jetzt ein einseitiger Beschluss zustande kommen sollte, der ja nicht zustande kommt, sondern nur ein Antrag, weil es dafür keine Mehrheit im Sicherheitsrat gibt und auch ein Veto überwunden werden müsste, haben wir einen neuen Deadlock, der dann gar keine Verhandlung mehr zulässt. Es kann keine Lösung für irgendjemand sein, das wäre auch nur ein kurzfristiger Erfolg für Präsident Abbas, und dann würde es zur Radikalisierung führen. Gerade in der Verbindung mit dem arabischen Frühling würde dies auch die Amerikaner und andere, auch Mitgliedstaaten der Europäischen Union, in eine schwierige Situation bringen. Aus diesem Grunde meine ich, dass der Versuch der Vorschläge des Quartetts mit einer festen Frist, unter klaren Bedingungen, klaren Konditionen, klaren Zielen Friedensverhandlungen zustande zu bringen, der geeignete Weg ist, der unterstützt werden sollte, und dass wir dafür den Weg finden müssen, der von dem Quartett vorgeschlagen wurde, um Frieden und Sicherheit miteinander in Verbindung zu bringen. Ich glaube, dass es dafür notwendig ist, dass keine Seite durch gewaltsame Aktionen, Ausbau von Siedlungen oder was auch immer Voraussetzungen schafft, die dies unmöglich machen. Aus diesem Grunde wünschen wir Ihnen, Hohe Vertreterin, viel Erfolg in den nächsten Tagen.


  Кристиан Вигенин (S&D). - г-жо председател, г-жо върховен представител,
г-н комисар, колеги, днес е поредната дискусия по ситуацията в Близкия Изток. Със сигурност няма да е последната, но аз вярвам, че сме все по-близо до решенията, които ще доведат до мирното съвместно съществуване на два народа, две независими и равноправни държави.

Внасянето на молбата за приемане на Палестина като пълноправен член на ООН е стъпка, която съдържа големи рискове, но открива и възможности. Сигурен съм, че президентът Абас не би предприел тази стъпка, ако не беше убеден, че всички други ходове и средства са изчерпани. Аз лично го възприемам като своеобразен вик за помощ и никой не може да се прави, че не чува този вик.

Тогава, когато народите в северна Африка и Близкия Изток се борят за демокрация и по-добро бъдеще за страните си, палестинците все още нямат своята държава. Само по себе си това е достатъчно да предизвика недоволство и нова радикализация в региона.

Разбирам в колко трудно положение се намира международната общност. Но нека приемем това и като тест за нашата способност да покажем решимост и единодействие. Бих искал да видя единна позиция на страните-членки на Европейския съюз в подкрепа на молбата, внесена от името на палестинския народ. Колкото по-бързо постигнем такава позиция, толкова по-лесно ще ни бъде да играем съществена роля в процеса след това.

Като казвам това, в никакъв случай не бих искал да си затваряме очите пред сериозните рискове за сигурността на Израел. Убеден съм, обаче, че цената на бездействието и отлагането на преговорите става все по-висока за самия Израел.

Бих искал, г-жо Аштън, да споделите с нас каква е Вашата гледна точка за възможно най-добрия сценарий от тук нататък, и може би да споделите с нас как Европейският парламент може да Ви помогне за това.


  Frédérique Ries (ALDE). - Madame la Présidente, Madame la Haute représentante, le peuple palestinien mérite de disposer, enfin, d'un État en bonne et due forme. Je crois que, sur le principe, nous sommes à peu près tous d'accord dans cet hémicycle pour soutenir cette aspiration légitime. J'irai même jusqu'à dire que je peux comprendre le jusqu'auboutisme de Mahmoud Abbas qui, en forçant la porte du Conseil de sécurité, met au pied du mur et embarrasse les parrains du processus de paix: les États-Unis, le Quartet et l'Union européenne, avec une demande maximaliste mais quasiment inéluctable face à l'enlisement des négociations, plutôt qu'à un statu quo, et à la frilosité – pour user d'un euphémisme – du gouvernement israélien actuel.

Cela étant dit, je reste viscéralement convaincue qu'après soixante années de conflit, il n'y a pas aujourd'hui de raccourci à la paix, que celle-ci doit être négociée entre ceux-là même qui, depuis si longtemps aujourd'hui, se disputent la même terre.

Il y a dix ans, le ministre israélien de l'éducation proposait que les poèmes de Mahmoud Darwich soient inclus dans le programme scolaire israélien pour que demain, voire aujourd'hui déjà, chacun voie les choses avec les yeux de l'autre. C'est à eux qu'il appartient maintenant de se partager leur terre promise avec ce calendrier et cette urgence de la fenêtre d'opportunité que nous précisons au paragraphe 2 de notre résolution.

(L'orateur accepte de répondre à une question "carton bleu", conformément à l'article 149, paragraphe 8, du règlement)


  Graham Watson (ALDE). - Madam President, Mrs Ries spoke about a peace being negotiated. I wonder what her view would be, and indeed what the view of the High Representative would be on those negotiations, including any kind of absolvement from the International Criminal Court for any crimes that might have been committed. If it is true, as Amnesty International is suggesting, that there is some idea that any negotiated peace might include excluding the International Criminal Court from any role in the future, then I think the European Union should rethink its position. I would be interested to know Mrs Ries’ position on that, and also the High Representative’s position when she replies.


  Frédérique Ries (ALDE). - Je suis tout à fait désolée, mais je l'ai dit la dernière fois en ce qui concerne les cartons bleus qui nous sont adressés: je pense qu'il ne s'agit pas ici de faire des procès ad hominem, ce qui est en général le cas. Je déplore un petit peu que cela se passe aujourd'hui à l'intérieur des mêmes groupes politiques et que la question qui vient de m'être posée ne concerne pas ce que j'ai dit, car il me semble avoir fait preuve d'une modération exemplaire ainsi que d'une volonté de trouver des compromis et d'aller de l'avant qui devraient être applaudies.

Je me demande parfois: si on envoyait certains des orateurs de cet hémicycle négocier eux-mêmes la paix là-bas, avancerait-elle un petit peu plus vite que ce qui se passe pour le moment? J'ai quelques doutes sur la question. Donc, je suis désolée, je pense que le sujet n'est pas pertinent par rapport au discours que j'ai prononcé. Et je ne suis pas sûre que Mme Ashton, d'ailleurs, voudra également s'exprimer sur cette question.


  Geoffrey Van Orden (ECR). - Madam President, I suppose the question for us is really what can the EU contribute usefully to developments in the Middle East? Baroness Ashton, you have expressed your view on how important the role of the EU has been, but I am more interested in practical results. On this I agree with what Mr Salafranca was saying. You say you want to get Israel and the Palestinians back to the negotiating table. Well, yes, we all do. Israel says she has long been open to resuming negotiations, so what pressure have you brought to bear on the Palestinians?

The EU is the most significant financial supporter of the Palestinian Authority, with some EUR 2 billion over the past four years. What action is being taken to leverage that financial influence to bring the Palestinians to the conference table? Where is the return on this investment?

The unilateral action by the Palestinian Authority at the United Nations is a deliberate provocation. Let us not forget, by the way, that Yasser Arafat declared Palestinian independence in October 1988. What is clear is that every time Israel has made a major concession, it has been greeted with further violence and seen as a sign of weakness. Look at what happened after the withdrawal from Gaza in 2005 and after Netanyahu’s ten-month suspension of settlement construction in the West Bank in 2009.

We have a small window of opportunity before the situation escalates. The EU needs to act responsibly.


  Margrete Auken (Verts/ALE). - Fru formand! Tak til baroness Ashton. Jeg tror, at vi næsten alle sammen er enige om, at det er godt, at palæstinenserne er så langt fremme nu, og jeg synes, at der er bred opbakning til, at palæstinenserne skal have deres stat. Men Israel har også brug for hjælp! I dag kan man i avisen Haaretz ud over den skrækkelige oplysning om de mange nye bosættelser i Gilo også et sted læse, at Israel sammenlignes med Titanic. Hvis ingen stopper Israel nu, bliver de ved med at sejle frem mod katastrofen. Derfor er det vigtigt, at vi gør mere end bare at nævne alt det, der skal ske. Israel bliver jo ved og ved og ved - fordi ingen stopper den siddende regering.

Det nødråb, jeg har hørt så mange steder fra, kommer ikke mindst fra israelere, som siger, at det er ved at ende galt. Derfor fru Ashton bør der gøres meget mere end blot at beklage denne igen ødelæggende beslutning om bosættelser. Og jeg mener også, at der kan gøres meget mere end bare at fordømme det. Vi har faktisk midler, vi kan bruge til at fortælle Israel, at det nu er tid til at stoppe, hvis hele denne situation skal ende i andet end vold og forfærdelighed.


  Vytautas Landsbergis (PPE). - Madam President, let me share something with you the House. Peace must be negotiated in order to achieve a negotiated peace. That peace is a priority, as it brings with it all other solutions about secure borders, settlements and refugees. That priority of peace can only be negotiated by men and women of peace. People of conflict cannot negotiate peace.


  Hans-Gert Pöttering (PPE). - Frau Präsidentin, liebe Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Der Außenminister der Bundesrepublik Deutschland hat gestern vor den Vereinten Nationen erklärt, dass die Verteidigung der Sicherheit Israels zur Staatsraison der Bundesrepublik Deutschland gehört. Ich möchte mich dem ausdrücklich aus politischen und moralischen Gründen anschließen.

Aber diese Stellungnahme, diese Verteidigung der Sicherheit Israels bedeutet nicht, dass wir zu Unrecht, das von Israel ausgeht, schweigen dürfen. Was sich mit dem Siedlungsbau vollzieht, ist eine ständige Verletzung der Würde der Palästinenser, weil man ihnen etwas wegnimmt, was ihnen gehört.

Frau Vizepräsidentin, ich schätze Ihre Arbeit hoch und möchte Sie ausdrücklich dafür loben. Aber wenn wir jetzt hören, dass Israel 1 100 neue Wohnungen jenseits der Grünen Linie in Jerusalem bauen will, dann reicht ein Wort des Bedauerns nicht aus, sondern wir müssen sagen: Gerade in dieser Situation ist es eine Provokation, und wir müssen es verurteilen. Am Ende wird Israel damit erreichen, was es nicht will, nämlich dass es zu einer einseitigen Anerkennung von Palästina kommt. Ich will lieber eine Lösung im Rahmen von Verhandlungen. Aber wenn Israel sich weiter so verhält, wie es das gegenwärtig tut, dann wird es zu einer einseitigen Anerkennung Palästinas kommen. Ich muss sagen, die Palästinenser haben ein Anrecht darauf, dass sie in Würde leben können, und ihre Würde muss sich ausdrücken in einem von der internationalen Gemeinschaft anerkannten Staat. Israel in sicheren Grenzen, Palästina in sicheren Grenzen, beide partnerschaftlich zusammenlebend. Aber hören wir endlich auf, immer wenn der Siedlungsbau weitergeht, diesen mit allzu zurückhaltenden Worten zu begleiten, wir müssen ihn nachdrücklich kritisieren, wir müssen ihn verurteilen!


  Proinsias De Rossa (S&D). - Madam President, this Parliament must give hope to Palestinians that their long night of humiliation and oppression can come to an end – and soon – while reassuring Israelis that their security and right to peace is guaranteed. Our vote tomorrow is critical. A vote for a Palestinian seat in the United Nations is a vote for Abbas’s non-violent diplomatic political strategy. It is a vote for a negotiated settlement, to which President Abbas has repeatedly said he is committed.

As former Prime Minister Olmert said in the New York Times last week, the time for true leadership has come. Israel will not always find itself sitting across the table from Palestinian leaders, like Mr Abbas and Prime Minister Salam Fayyad, who object to terrorism and want peace. Indeed future Palestinian leaders might abandon the idea of two states and take a one-state solution, making reconciliation impossible.

Prime Minister Netanyahu, on the other hand, calls for negotiations without preconditions while, at the same time, establishing concrete preconditions on the ground again today by ordering new building in East Jerusalem. This is clearly intended to prevent negotiations getting underway. Regretting these actions will not stop them, Baroness Ashton. We have to make it clear that these actions carry a cost.

I welcome the efforts you have made over the last while; I welcome, too, the Quartet’s statement of last week, limited though it is. However, its success depends on our building on the positive international engagement that the Abbas initiative has brought about. To conclude, could I ask you, Baroness Ashton, to come back to the House at some point in the near future with the proposals referred to in the Quartet statement that it is looking for ways to increase the independence of the Palestinian Authority and its sovereignty.


  Chris Davies (ALDE). - Madam President, last Friday was a good day for Palestinians. They do not get many of those. With all its divisions, I do not think the European Union has exactly covered itself in glory, but I pay credit to the High Representative for her efforts in herding cats.

Collectively though, we risk being on the wrong side. Some Member States do not seem to recognise that Israel has two faces. One is liberal and democratic, and we all support it. The other, the one seen in the Palestinian territories, is one of arbitrary and unjust military rule. Of course a solution has to be reached and of course it has to be reached by negotiation, but I just see the present Israeli Government putting in place more and more preconditions – like the preconditions we have heard about, such as building settlements. It is like asking the Palestinians to share the division of a pizza, while the Israelis continue to eat the Palestinian side of it. Then there is the new precondition of recognising Israel as a Jewish state – well we recognise states, but we do not recognise the character of states.

High Representative, I just see no movement on the part of Prime Minister Netanyahu. However, you have been privy to the talks and you have been negotiating. Can you give the House any indication of where such movements will come from?

(The speaker agreed to take a blue-card question under Rule 149(8))


  Alexander Graf Lambsdorff (ALDE). - Madam President, just a short question to Mr Davies. Would he concede that, on the Palestinian side, it is fair to speak of two faces as well?


  Chris Davies (ALDE). - Madam President, it is certainly true to say that Palestine is divided. When we look at Hamas – and we always look at Hamas and the problems there – we also have to recognise that, when there has been great injustice, one side may turn to extreme measures. The way to defeat terrorism is to try to involve people in day-to-day politics. We sponsored elections which were won by Hamas. We sponsored elections, and then we refused to deal with the democratic leaders. We allowed the men of violence to triumph. We have problems with the way we have dealt with this problem in the past. We need to try to learn the lessons for the future.


  Ashley Fox (ECR). - Madam President, last week’s UN General Assembly meeting and the associated media coverage was dominated by Palestine’s move to gain full membership of the UN – rightly so – but that very important event overshadowed a little corner of the Middle East – the return of President Saleh to Yemen – and I would like to address the High Representative on this issue.

The situation in Yemen has received very limited coverage, though its importance to the Middle East cannot be underestimated. Yemen desperately needs attention and support if it is to avoid becoming a failed state. Al-Qa’ida has a strong presence there and there are at least two secessionist movements trying to rip the country apart.

High Representative, I have said this before in this Chamber and I shall repeat it: if Yemen is allowed to fail, then the consequences will be dire, not just for Yemeni citizens but for all of us. I know your scope for action is very limited, but I would urge you to do all you can to work with the Saudi Arabian Government and with the Gulf Cooperation Council to do all we can to avoid Yemen degenerating into another Somalia.


  Franziska Katharina Brantner (Verts/ALE). - Madam President, I would actually like to talk about Libya. A Green delegation has just returned from Libya. We spent four days there and many decisions are being taken now, at EU level as well. It is inspiring and impressive, but a daunting, task.

Allow me to pick out just two issues. First, the EU has been called upon to help with border control. Actually Gaddafi asked us exactly the same thing a year ago. I had opposed it in the past because there was no legal framework at all in Libya for migration. There still is not. All I ask you, Baroness Ashton and Mr Füle, is to ensure that we do not do one without the other – border control without any legal framework – that we do not train border-control personnel in a legal vacuum. I think it would be a serious mistake if we were to do that now.

Secondly, women have been victims of violence and they have been very active in the revolution. Now is the time to support them quickly and unbureaucratically. We met amazing young women full of hope, with a strong will and a desire for freedom. They were the only ones actually asking for financial support because they do not have access to the pots of money wandering around. Please do not disappoint them.

Finally I am very worried about Egypt. The military has taken a very hard grip on society again. I want you to speak out on this. We need to hear you and your voice in criticising what is going on.


  Mário David (PPE). - A não existência de um processo de paz em curso está a colocar em causa os direitos básicos e tem levado à assunção de medidas unilaterais de parte a parte que não têm contribuído, de forma alguma, para um desanuviar das tensões na região e, muito menos, para a busca efectiva de uma vida para os dois povos que têm o direito a viver harmoniosamente em paz, segurança e com dignidade.

Chegou a altura da comunidade internacional dizer basta! Chegou a altura da Europa e da Liga Árabe impulsionarem a busca de uma solução duradoura, com sensatez, apresentando soluções viáveis, sem demoras e com prazos limites. É evidente que os Estados Unidos e a Rússia já não fazem parte da solução.

Comecemos por Jerusalém: por que não recomeçar a ideia inicial de um corpus separatum administrado pela ONU e que funcione, obviamente, como capital dos dois Estados?

Fronteiras: comecemos pelas de 67. Troquem-se parcelas de terreno quanto possível e coerente. Cuide-se da defesa de Israel, assunto obviamente incontornável para o povo judeu. Por exemplo, através da colocação de capacetes azuis com americanos, europeus e forças islâmicas junto ao Jordão.

Refugiados: existem cerca de 4,8 milhões e têm o direito à sua dignidade. A um futuro ligado a uma terra, de preferência a sua. Mas não são exclusivamente um problema israelita, nem palestiniano, é também nosso, é dos países vizinhos árabes, da comunidade árabe em geral, mas também da Europa e da restante comunidade internacional.

Colonatos: tem de acabar a sua expansão. E isto não é negociável. O anúncio feito hoje é vergonhoso e traduz a hipocrisia e a má-fé num anúncio de disponibilidade para negociações imediatas. Acima de tudo queremos negociações de boa-fé, empenhadas com uma data-limite para a sua conclusão, a partir da qual a comunidade internacional, para manter a sua credibilidade, terá de ter outra atitude.


  Kader Arif (S&D). - Madame la Présidente, Madame la Haute représentante, depuis 1947, date à laquelle l'Assemblée générale des Nations unies décidait de la création de deux États sur le territoire de l'ancien mandat sur la Palestine, nous attendons toujours la concrétisation de cet engagement.

Dès lors, comment accepter aujourd'hui une telle prudence dans les discours? Comment justifier que, face à cette occasion historique, nous n'apportions pas un soutien ferme à l'initiative du Président Abbas? Je tiens à vous rappeler, Madame Ashton, que la prudence mène parfois à la lâcheté.

Alors, je veux rendre hommage au courage et à la persévérance d'un homme, Mahmoud Abbas. Il porte une espérance légitime, celle d'un peuple qui a droit à une terre, et à ceux qui objectent que cette initiative provoquerait une flambée de violence, je tiens à rappeler qu'il y a quelques années, c'est l'empêchement d'une telle initiative qui avait nourri la deuxième intifada.

Mon message est simple, Madame la Haute représentante, à l'heure du printemps arabe, il est de votre responsabilité et de la nôtre de soutenir jusqu'au bout la démarche palestinienne. L'Union européenne s'est honorée de faire tomber un mur et de reconnaître des États, elle se grandirait en reconnaissant que les Palestiniens, eux aussi, ont droit à un État.




  Rui Tavares (Verts/ALE). - A pergunta que os palestinianos fazem, não só aos países membros no Conselho de Segurança, não só às nações que estão na ONU, mas a todos e a cada um de nós é muito simples: terão os palestinianos, ocupados, colonizados, o direito de ver a dignidade do seu Estado reconhecido pelas Nações Unidas? Sim ou não? Sem colocar em causa a existência do Estado de Israel ao lado da Palestina, sim ou não? Uma resposta adiada, uma resposta evasiva, é uma resposta indigna. Os palestinianos têm direito a que lhes seja respondido, inclusive pela União Europeia, sim ou não.

E, em vez de aceitarmos esta espécie de adiamento permanente, enquanto Israel avança com os colonatos, o que nós deveríamos fazer era falar à sociedade israelita, aos 400 mil da classe média israelita que saíram para as ruas e dizer-lhes: aceitem agora o Estado da Palestina, aceitem agora a paz e a União Europeia tomará em mãos as suas responsabilidades de dar segurança a todos, de dar dignidade a todos e de dar acesso aos mercados da União Europeia, dar acesso à prosperidade a todos. Porque a sociedade civil israelita sabe muito bem que o caminho para onde Netanyahu os leva é o de um beco sem saída e sem amigos.

Nós não podemos continuar sempre nesta sina de se ficar à porta das ocasiões históricas. Senhora Ashton, uma resposta simples: sim ou não? Sim!


  Michael Cashman (S&D). - Madam President, I hope the House will allow me to ask it to recognise and welcome Members of the South African Parliament who are here in the gallery, led by the Honourable Joan Fubbs. I mention them in particular because Africa is affected directly by events in North Africa, and indeed by events in the Middle East. I think it is our duty, and indeed our honour, to welcome them to this debate.



  Mario Mauro (PPE). - Signor Presidente, signora Alto rappresentante, onorevoli colleghi, ha detto bene l'on. Brok, a molti di noi è capitato in passato di criticarla su alcune iniziative.

Non lo faremo questa volta e non lo facciamo perché percepiamo che la presenza dell'Alto rappresentante è un fattore di novità che, aiutando l'Unione europea ad assumere una posizione condivisa su questa materia, la materia del conflitto israelo-palestinese, può essere decisivo per orientare una positiva evoluzione del conflitto.

Vogliamo quindi che lei sappia e senta la vicinanza del Parlamento e, come ha detto bene Hans-Gert Pöttering, noi sappiamo quello che vogliamo: un accordo basato sull'esistenza di due Stati democratici e sovrani, i cui popoli possono vivere all'interno di confini sicuri e riconosciuti a livello internazionale. Quello che manca ancora sono negoziati che abbiano date certe e conclusioni certe. Tutti i paesi democratici sanno che la pace si raggiungerà quando nascerà lo Stato palestinese, ma sappiamo anche che ciò deve passare attraverso un vero negoziato di pace.

Non può esistere lo Stato palestinese senza la pace, e proclamare uno Stato palestinese oggi significherebbe soltanto mettere fine al negoziato di pace per aprire una nuova fase del conflitto interno.


  Saïd El Khadraoui (S&D). - Mevrouw de hoge vertegenwoordiger, we wachten al tientallen jaren. Het wordt hoog tijd dat we kleur bekennen en de Palestijnen echt perspectief bieden op een stabiele en economisch leefbare context. Dat kan niet anders dan door te starten met erkenning. De erkenning dus ook van de Palestijnse staat, want dat zal samengaan met hoop.

De klok tikt al vele jaren. Een tijdbom van frustraties moet ontmijnd worden. Ik denk dat dit in de context van de Arabische lente en de snelle geopolitieke veranderingen in de regio een momentum zou kunnen creëren dat kan leiden tot duurzame vrede. Want dat is wat we uiteindelijk natuurlijk met zijn allen willen bereiken.

Natuurlijk moeten er onderhandelingen gevoerd worden. Maar ik denk persoonlijk dat de sterkste partij de eerste geste moet doen, zoals bijvoorbeeld de geste om geen nederzettingen meer te bouwen. Dat zou het proces kunnen opstarten.

En laten we ten slotte vaststellen dat de aanvraag tot erkenning geen geheim was en dat het te betreuren valt dat de internationale gemeenschap daar eigenlijk veel te weinig op geanticipeerd heeft, dat men te lang gewacht heeft om een oplossing te vinden die de partijen rond de tafel dwingt.


  Tokia Saïfi (PPE). - Madame la Présidente, Madame la Haute représentante, la demande faite par Mahmoud Abbas doit être soutenue, car elle est légitime. Elle se révèle d'autant plus légitime dans le contexte des printemps arabes où ces peuples sont en train de prouver leur soif de démocratie et de liberté jusqu'à en sacrifier leurs vies.

Nous ne pouvons pas répondre à cette demande de justice par l'injustice. Le statu quo qui perdure depuis de nombreuses années au Proche-Orient n'est plus acceptable et doit cesser. Il faut exiger maintenant une véritable solution, à savoir la reprise immédiate des négociations avec un calendrier resserré et sur les bases de 1967.

La création d'un État palestinien démocratique, viable et pacifique, n'est-elle pas la meilleure garantie de sécurité pour Israël? Madame la Haute représentante, je vous félicite de tous vos efforts, mais il faut aller plus loin, car une fois de plus, il est regrettable de constater les divisions et l'absence de position commune des États membres de l'Union européenne. Et il est regrettable que certains gouvernements européens s'opposent à la volonté de leurs citoyens qui soutiennent massivement la création d'un État palestinien. En tant qu'élus de ces peuples, pouvons-nous accepter cela? Et j'adhère complètement à la déclaration de Hans-Gert Pöttering.

Madame la Haute représentante, il est temps que le vent du changement qui souffle sur une partie du monde arabe souffle également sur Jérusalem, sur Ramallah et sur Tel-Aviv.



  Roberto Gualtieri (S&D). - Signor Presidente, onorevoli colleghi, siamo giunti a un momento cruciale per la decennale aspirazione del popolo palestinese ad avere una patria e anche per la giusta aspirazione del popolo israeliano a vivere in sicurezza, perché quest'aspirazione è strettamente legata alla prima, perché non c'è sicurezza senza pace e non c'è pace senza uno Stato palestinese democratico e rispettoso del diritto internazionale, come quello che ci ha delineato Mahmud Abbas all'ONU.

L'accettazione del calendario proposto dal Quartetto è un successo per l'Unione europea, successo di cui dobbiamo dare atto a lei, signora Alto rappresentante, nonostante alcuni Stati si siano impegnati a cercare di rubare la scena all'Unione europea. E tuttavia gli annunci di nuovi insediamenti ci avvertono che il cammino sarà costellato di provocazioni. Per questo è importante accrescere la pressione sul governo israeliano, esprimendo con chiarezza il sostegno dell'UE, anche in assenza di un'unanimità assoluta, a un possibile voto in Assemblea generale sull'acquisizione dello status di Stato non membro.

Ed è importante che questo Parlamento sia unito nel sostenere ed accrescere questa pressione anche mettendo da parte le differenze di opinione sulla piena membership, ma sostenendo tutti insieme, nella sua risoluzione, la legittima aspirazione dei palestinesi a essere rappresentati come Stato alle Nazioni Unite.


  György Schöpflin (PPE). - Madam President, I think we all agree that the Middle East is undergoing a palpable transformation; the Arab Spring, democracy movements, decline of the autocrats, they all testify to this.

In this context, the bid for the full recognition of Palestinian statehood has become a reality – whether the United States accepts this or not. In this context, too, it is irrelevant that the United States has already signalled that it will veto the Palestinian application, because the idea of a Palestinian state has garnered substantial support around the world. Probably a majority of the Members of the United Nations are in favour, so this acceptance of Palestinian statehood is almost certainly irreversible as a political fact.

Legally, of course, nothing much has happened, but political realities and legal status are often at variance. What is perplexing in this context, too, is Israel’s solid rejection of the Palestinian position despite all the evidence – and we heard a lot of it this afternoon – that the much discussed two-state solution is the most likely outcome – true, a long-term outcome – of the process.

So the implication is that Israel will eventually be constrained to accept the Palestinian bid for statehood, so the sooner it does so, the better for all concerned. It is regrettable, all the more regrettable then, that Israel and its supporters are basically disregarding a new political fact, the due arrival of Palestinian statehood.


  Göran Färm (S&D). - Madam President, the Budgets Committee of the European Parliament is preparing a report on the new neighbourhood instrument as well as on the 2012 EU Budget, and I have some questions.

One, we must draw conclusions from what the EU did before the Arab Spring. We supported civil society, democratic institution-building, etc., but it is obvious that many saw EU aid mainly as support for the existing, far from democratic regimes. So my question is: what will the Commission suggest in order to design the programmes, rules, conditionality criteria, etc., for the future, to avoid that?

Two, we must also draw conclusions from the fact that historically some Member States, particularly the old colonial powers, gave priority to their national interests rather than those of the local citizens or the European Union. How can we achieve better coordination for the future in order for the Union to play a crucial and constructive role?

Three, the situation in Palestine makes it absolutely necessary to increase substantially the Commission and Council proposals for funding 2012. Will the Commission come up with a revised proposal for that?


  Γεώργιος Κουμουτσάκος (PPE). - Κύριε Επίτροπε, κυρία Ύπατη Εκπρόσωπε, η Παλαιστινιακή Αρχή κατέθεσε αίτημα να γίνει μέλος του ΟΗΕ ως ανεξάρτητη κρατική οντότητα. Είναι αναμφισβήτητα μια ιστορική στιγμή. Γνωρίζουμε ότι, εκτός απρόοπτου, αυτό δεν θα εγκριθεί από το Συμβούλιο Ασφαλείας. Γνωρίζουμε επίσης ότι, εάν αυτό το αίτημα υποβληθεί στη Γενική Συνέλευση, το πιθανότερο είναι να υπάρξει καθεστώς παρατηρητή για την Παλαιστίνη, παρόμοιο με αυτό που έχει το κράτος του Βατικανού.

Πιστεύω ότι, δεδομένων των συνθηκών, αυτή θα είναι μια πολύ θετική εξέλιξη για τρεις τουλάχιστον λόγους. Πρώτον, γιατί είναι θέμα αρχής: επιτέλους, πρέπει να γίνουν χειροπιαστά βήματα για την ύπαρξη ενός ανεξάρτητου αναγνωρισμένου παλαιστινιακού κράτους. Δεύτερον, γιατί αυτό δεν επηρεάζει τις συνομιλίες για την εξεύρεση λύσης: γιατί άραγε μια αλλαγή του καθεστώτος της Παλαιστίνης θα επηρεάσει ή, όπως λέγεται, δεν θα επιτρέψει την επανεκκίνηση της διαδικασίας; Πιστεύω ότι είναι μια λάθος εκτίμηση. Τρίτο θετικό στοιχείο, επειδή η ακραία πλευρά των Παλαιστινίων, η Χαμάς, η οποία αντιτίθεται στην προσπάθεια που κάνει ο Αμπάς στον ΟΗΕ, θα υποστεί μια πολιτική ήττα: θα εξασθενίσει, και η πολιτική της επιρροή θα σμικρυνθεί.

Τελικά, με το να λάβει η Παλαιστινιακή Αρχή στην αρχή καθεστώς παρατηρητή και στη συνέχεια καθεστώς πλήρους μέλους, ενισχύεται η ασφάλεια του Ισραήλ. Το Ισραήλ έχει απαράγραπτο δικαίωμα στην ασφάλεια αλλά και οι Παλαιστίνιοι έχουν απαράγραπτο δικαίωμα στο να υπάρξει γι’ αυτούς ένα ανεξάρτητο κράτος. Και οι δύο οι στόχοι μπορούν να επιτευχθούν εάν έχουμε μια θετική εξέλιξη στον ΟΗΕ.


  María Muñiz De Urquiza (S&D). - Señora Presidenta, este es su momento, señora Ashton, es el momento de la Unión Europea para consolidar la relevancia y el prestigio políticos que se están recuperando en la zona y que se habían ido deteriorando en los últimos años a fuerza de parálisis y de bloqueos.

Es el momento de la Unión Europea para dar un paso al frente en las Naciones Unidas y expresar con una voz alta, clara, autónoma y unánime –y si no es unánime que sea ambiciosa– que está a favor de la petición, legítima, de la Autoridad Palestina para ser reconocida en el marco de las Naciones Unidas.

Palestina –sus autoridades– ha reunido en estos últimos años las condiciones que le había planteado la comunidad internacional para desembocar en unas negociaciones fructíferas en relación con la creación de un Estado palestino.

Israel no ha reunido la única condición que se le planteaba, que era la de parar los asentamientos.

Este es el momento de la Unión Europea, de ponerse en el lado de los ambiciosos, no en el lado de los obstruccionistas, de dar un paso adelante, de condenar la continuidad de los asentamientos de Israel y de propiciar así un futuro papel relevante de la Unión Europea en las negociaciones que esperamos que, a partir de ahora, se puedan llevar a cabo.


  Cristian Dan Preda (PPE). - Luna trecută regimul Gaddafi s-a prăbuşit, după preluarea capitalei de către rebeli. Astăzi forţele pro-CNT controlează portul Sirte, ceea ce înseamnă că, în foarte scurt timp, Libia se va putea angaja în tranziţia către democraţie. În Siria, regimul lui Bashar al-Assad va avea foarte probabil şi el, în scurt timp, aceeaşi soartă. În timp ce tunisienii, egiptenii, libienii şi, sperăm cu toţii, în scurt timp, sirienii, descoperă gustul libertăţii, peisajul e foarte diferit în Orientul Mijlociu. Dacă în nordul Africii democratizarea este la ordinea zilei şi ea va reuşi dacă va institui o politică bazată pe compromis, vedem cu totul altceva în procesul de pace din Orientul Mijlociu. Aici nu construcţia consensuală, ci o viziune unilaterală pare să se impună. Asta e, în opinia mea, sensul cererii de aderare la Naţiunile Unite depuse vineri de preşedintele Abbas. În loc să încerce să construiască o veritabilă autonomie internă înainte de a o impune la nivel internaţional, preşedintele Abbas a ales, după cum spunea şi preşedintele Obama, o scurtătură iluzorie. Cererea de aderare palestiniană înseamnă de fapt depăşirea cadrului de negociere definit de acordurile de la Oslo şi precizat prin foaia de rută prezentată în 2003 de Quartet. Pacea se construieşte prin negocieri şi nu prin măsuri unilaterale. Lecţia primăverii arabe pentru procesul de pace ar trebui să fie că democraţia înseamnă căutarea consensului şi nu unilateralismul.


  Μαρία-Ελένη Κοππά (S&D). - Κυρία Ashton, μας είπατε ότι είστε περήφανη γιατί η Ένωση είναι ένας διεθνής παίκτης στο παλαιστινιακό. Γιατί είστε αλήθεια περήφανη; Όταν η Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση δεν κατάφερε ούτε στο θέμα αυτό του παλαιστινιακού αιτήματος στον ΟΗΕ να έχει μια θέση, όταν δεν τολμά, όπως σήμερα, να καταδικάσει την επέκταση του εποικισμού.

Το αίτημα του Μαχμούτ Αμπάς στα Ηνωμένα Έθνη θέτει την Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση ενώπιον των ιστορικών ευθυνών της. Είναι ευθύνη όλων μας να σεβαστούμε την απόφαση των Παλαιστινίων να ζητήσουν να γίνουν μέλος του Οργανισμού και να στηρίξουμε αυτή την προσπάθεια σαν βασικό βήμα και σημαντική ευκαιρία για την επανέναρξη των διαπραγματεύσεων. Ο παλαιστινιακός λαός έχει δικαίωμα στην ειρήνη και την ασφάλεια, όπως ακριβώς και το κράτος του Ισραήλ. Καταδικάζοντας τον παράνομο εποικισμό, που θέτει μεγάλα εμπόδια στην ειρηνική διευθέτηση του παλαιστινιακού ζητήματος, πιστεύω ότι πρέπει να εργαστούμε όλοι μαζί για την αναγνώριση ενός βιώσιμου παλαιστινιακού κράτους στα σύνορα του 1967 με την Ιερουσαλήμ ως κοινή πρωτεύουσα που να εγγυάται την ειρήνη για όλους λαούς της περιοχής.


  Ria Oomen-Ruijten (PPE). - Mevrouw de Voorzitter, het is goed dat we vandaag dit debat hebben. Ik wil ook mijn complimenten geven aan mevrouw Ashton. Waar ik extra blij mee ben is dat we ook in het Europees Parlement nu lijken te komen met een stevige gezamenlijke tekst, een tekst die erkent en aangeeft dat de Palestijnen recht hebben op een eigen staat, conform de grenzen van '67, en dat ook Israël, en haar burgers, recht heeft op veiligheid. Voorzitter, we willen dat er tijdens deze 66ste vergadering van de VN – dus nog dít jaar – een oplossing komt voor het legitieme verzoek van Mahmoud Abbas, want we kunnen en we mogen en we willen de Palestijnen niet met lege handen naar huis sturen.

Er is echter één ding dat ik mis in de resolutie. Wat doet Europa en wat doet de internationale gemeenschap als Israël blijft doorgaan met het bouwen van nederzettingen, zoals men vandaag heeft aangekondigd dat het in Oost-Jeruzalem gaat doen? Collega Pöttering heeft er al over gesproken. Wat denkt u van deze provocaties? Betekent dat dat u ook de mogelijkheid openlaat dat we dan tot eenzijdige acties over gaan?


  Boris Zala (S&D). - Je mi skutočne ľúto, že sa nepodarilo v rámci Európskej únie dosiahnuť jednotný postoj. Je to veľká škoda, pretože bola to a je to stále výnimočná situácia, v ktorej Európa môže zohrať významnú rolu.

Veľmi by ma zaujímalo, prečo sa nepodarilo dosiahnuť toto jednotné stanovisko, pokiaľ ide o palestínsku žiadosť o štát. Na druhej strane by som chcel aj viacerým kolegom tu v sále povedať, že nie je to jednostranná žiadosť alebo jednostranné uznanie Palestíny, pretože uznaním tejto žiadosti de facto sa vlastne zároveň uznáva aj suverenita, legitimita izraelského štátu. Keď sa uzná Palestína v hraniciach z roku 1967.

Rád by som zdôraznil ešte jednu vec. Počuli sme už niekoľkokrát, že sa chystajú určité protiopatrenia proti Palestíne. Myslím si, že by Európska únia mala rázne voči tomuto zakročiť, pretože nie je možné, aby bola trestaná krajina, ktorá využije svoje prirodzené právo podať si žiadosť o štátnosť, aby bola trestaná sankciami alebo inými opatreniami, ktoré sa proti nej chystajú.


  Sari Essayah (PPE). - Arvoisa puhemies, arvoisa rouva Ashton, kuten monet kollegat täällä ovat jo sanoneet, palestiinalaisten symbolinen itsenäisyyshanke ei ikävä kyllä ratkaise mitään niistä kiistakysymyksistä, jotka ovat alueella hiertäneet osapuolten välejä jo vuosia. Ennen kuin todellista rauhaa ja mahdollisuutta rinnakkaiseloon löytyy, on osapuolten pystyttävä sopimaan keskenään turvallisten rajojen lisäksi muun muassa siirtokunnista, vedestä ja uskontojen pyhistä paikoista.

Alueen epätasapaino ja lähitulevaisuuden muutokset ovat hyvin ratkaisevia. Israel joutuu seuraamaan sivusta kansannousuja ja kumouksia sekä odottamaan olosuhteisiin nähden parasta, mutta pelkäämään pahinta. Suurin uhka alueella on arabimaiden hallintojen karkaaminen ekstremistien käsiin. Se on uhka myöskin palestiinalaisalueilla, sillä Fatah ja Hamas ovat tehneet aiesopimuksen yhtenäishallituksesta, ja on hyvin mahdollista, että syksyn aluevaalien jälkeen palestiinalaisalueiden valta liukuu terroristijärjestö Hamasille.

Sen tähden tässä tilanteessa EU:n ainoan viestin on oltava se, että rauhanneuvotteluja on jatkettava osapuolten välillä. EU ei voi tukea minkäänlaista yksipuolista julistusta, koska silloin se myös rikkoisi itse edesauttamaansa Oslon sopimusta ja siihen sisältyvää pidättäytymistä yksipuolisista julistuksista.


  Wolfgang Kreissl-Dörfler (S&D). - Frau Präsidentin, verehrte Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Wir unterstützen die Friedensinitiative des Quartetts, und ich möchte Ihnen, liebe Cathy Ashton, zu Ihren Anstrengungen und zur Ihren Erfolgen in dieser Richtung ganz herzlich gratulieren und Ihnen auch danken.

Ja, wir müssen beide Seiten auffordern, ja, eigentlich zwingen, an den Verhandlungstisch zurückzukehren und innerhalb des vorgesetzten Zeitrahmens zu Erfolgen zu kommen. Ende 2012 müssen die Verträge stehen, und ich stehe da – genauso, wie Kollege Pöttering es gesagt hat – zu der Staatsraison in Deutschland, ohne Wenn und Aber. Das muss gesagt werden.

Aber das bedeutet doch nicht, dass ich diese Regierung in Israel billigen muss, dass ich zu Netanjahu und Lieberman stehen muss. Ganz im Gegenteil. Ich möchte sagen: Diese Regierung ist eine mittlere Katastrophe für die Bevölkerung Israels. Da werden die Lebensgrundlagen und der ökonomische Wohlstand zerstört. Gleichzeitig ist sie eine Gefahr für den Frieden im Nahen und Mittleren Osten. Das muss einmal deutlich gesagt werden.

Was ist denn so verwerflich daran, dass Mahmud Abbas vor der UNO demokratisch einen Antrag einbringt? 125 Staaten haben Palästina bereits anerkannt. Wahrscheinlich werden 140 Staaten in der UNO für den Sonderstatus Palästinas analog zum Vatikan stimmen. Nein, das ist nicht undemokratisch, das ist das Recht, und wir haben in dieser Richtung weiterzuarbeiten. Diese Regierung, die derzeit in Israel ist, erfüllt nicht die Bedingungen, die notwendig sind.


  Francisco José Millán Mon (PPE). - Señora Ashton, hace más de seis meses celebramos aquí un debate sobre el proceso de paz. Insistí, entonces, en que era muy urgente reanudar las negociaciones porque el tiempo no jugaba a favor de ninguna de las dos partes. Comprendo que el bloqueo del proceso haya movido a la parte palestina a tomar la iniciativa y a llevar la cuestión de su admisión a las Naciones Unidas.

Ahora estamos en una situación muy compleja. Supongo que al final el asunto pasará del Consejo de Seguridad a la Asamblea General. Deseo que la Unión Europea y sus Estados miembros sean activos y que los Veintisiete estén unidos a la hora de pronunciarse sobre la resolución que finalmente se vote.

No caben soluciones simples: ni un simple sí, ni un simple no. La resolución de la Asamblea General debe ser cuidadosa, no debe hacer peligrar el proceso de paz ni poner a las partes en situaciones imposibles, tampoco a los otros actores, impulsores principales del proceso. Pero el inmovilismo no debe ser una opción.

Señorías, desgraciadamente hoy, como hace seis meses, no puedo ser optimista sobre el progreso de las negociaciones. La noticia conocida hoy de nuevos asentamientos en Jerusalén es, francamente, muy mala. Además, me temo que algunas de las consultas electorales de 2012 no favorecerán una solución. El 2013 podrá ser mejor, pero lamentaría que, coincidiendo, además, con una nueva dinámica de cambio en el mundo árabe, perdiéramos un año.

Son momentos de responsabilidad histórica para las partes y también para toda la comunidad internacional.


  Salvatore Iacolino (PPE). - Signor Presidente, onorevoli colleghi, Alto rappresentante, non vi è dubbio che il processo di pace nel Medioriente, così come nel Nord Africa, esige oggi più che mai comportamenti decisi e autorevoli, uno spirito europeo comune che possa portare finalmente ad una strategia chiara e condivisa.

Proprio perché appaiono inadeguate alla complessità del momento le iniziative autonome di taluni Stati membri – mi riferisco a quelle in Libia di qualche settimana fa – risulta invece essenziale che l'Unione europea, con i suoi partner internazionali, primo fra tutti l'ONU, possa definire un unico programma per realizzare questa pace che ormai da troppo tempo manca. Riconoscere la dignità di entrambi, Israele e Palestina, non significa tuttavia supportarne acriticamente gli errori e i comportamenti pretestuosi.

Lo ha detto poco fa, fra gli altri, l'on. Pöttering: non basta implorare i sentimenti, gli insediamenti non vanno fatti e quindi bisogna intervenire anche attraverso congrue sanzioni, perché se ci sono delle regole, le stesse vanno certamente tutelate e osservate. Quello che accade nel Nord Africa non deve neanche essere sottaciuto, il vento di libertà, di pace e di diritti fondamentali deve essere garantito e assistito in particolare da Lei, signora Ashton.

Comprendiamo le difficoltà, ma registriamo anche gli sforzi che Lei sta compiendo per una cooperazione forte ed efficace e per dare soprattutto chance di successo a quei paesi terzi che avranno meritato la nostra fiducia.


  Elena Băsescu (PPE). - În baza bunelor relaţii bilaterale pe care le-a dezvoltat atât cu Israel, cât şi cu Autoritatea Naţională Palestiniană, România a încurajat mereu părţile să se aşeze la masa negocierilor fără precondiţii. Poziţia mea vizavi de acest subiect este una principială. Reluarea negocierilor este cea mai bună linie de acţiune pentru obţinerea soluţiei celor două state care să convieţuiască în pace şi securitate. Consider că demersurile unilaterale nu sunt de natură să contribuie la instaurarea unei păci durabile, pace care reprezintă obiectivul fundamental al întregii comunităţi internaţionale. Cred cu tărie că singura cale pentru împlinirea idealurilor palestiniene este prin intermediul negocierilor directe. Voi susţine orice iniţiativă care ar putea servi acestui scop, aşa cum am făcut-o şi până în prezent. Nu se poate obţine o soluţie viabilă pe termen lung dacă între palestinieni şi israelieni nu se ajunge la un acord. O eventuală recunoaştere a Palestinei ca stat trebuie să fie fundamentată pe o soluţie acceptată de ambele părţi cu care, împreună, să meargă la ONU.

În final, salut declaraţia Quartetului care face apel la cele două părţi să reia imediat şi fără precondiţii negocierile bilaterale directe. Nu este prea târziu pentru eforturi diplomatice, din contră este momentul să le intensificăm.


  Othmar Karas (PPE). - Frau Präsidentin, Frau Kommissarin, meine Damen und Herren! Es geht um zwei Bereiche. Auf der einen Seite geht es um eine gemeinsame Außenpolitik der Mitgliedstaaten der Europäischen Union, repräsentiert von Cathy Ashton, und damit um die Schaffung von Voraussetzungen, dass wir Einfluss haben auf die Entwicklungen außerhalb unseres Kontinents. Ich bin daher sehr froh, dass es den Anschein hat, dass es zu einer gemeinsamen Position aller EU-Staaten in der UNO kommt, und bin auch sehr froh darüber, dass es im Parlament zu einer gemeinsamen Entschließung gekommen ist.

Auf der anderen Seite geht es um den Frieden im Nahen Osten – nicht nur dort, aber wir sprechen heute darüber. Ich gehöre zu einer Gruppe von Politikern und Diplomaten, die an die österreichische Bundesregierung einen Brief mit folgenden Eckdaten geschrieben hat: Ja zur Zwei-Staaten-Lösung, die Grenzen von 1967 sind die Grundlage für das palästinensische Territorium, Jerusalem soll die Hauptstadt für beide Staaten sein, das Ziel ist die Vollmitgliedschaft Palästinas bei den Vereinten Nationen. Wir begrüßen den Zwischenschritt des Quartetts, Vatikansituation und Stufenplan. Es geht jetzt darum, Nägel mit Köpfen zu machen, Eskalation zu verhindern, die Siedlungspolitik zu beenden und Gewaltanwendungen zu unterbinden.


  Katarína Neveďalová (S&D). - Vyriešenie izraelsko-palestínskeho konfliktu patrí k strategickým prioritám Európskej únie. Podporujem úsilie pani Ashtonovej, že jediným riešením tohto konfliktu je snaha napomôcť k vytvoreniu dvoch nezávislých a demokratických štátov, ktoré budú schopné vedľa seba existovať a žiť v mieri.

Nesmieme samozrejme zabúdať ani na jedného človeka, ktorý prišiel v boji v tejto vojne o život, ale samozrejme táto vojna musí čoskoro skončiť. Verím, že začiatkom tohto konca môže byť práve uznanie Palestíny ako nezávislého štátu a postavenie oboch strán konfliktu na jednu úroveň.

Takisto, keď hovoríme o severnej Afrike a tzv. Arabskej jari, táto má na svedomí viac ako len dve revolúcie v Egypte a v Tunisku a stále nedokončenú občiansku vojnu v Líbyi, ale ďalšie množstvo veľkých alebo menších protestov a samozrejme veľký počet ľudských životov.

Je veľmi ťažké odhadnúť, či všetky zmeny budú mať pozitívny dopad. Jedno je však isté. Tieto transformácie budú mať zásadný vplyv na budúce generácie, a to nie iba v postihnutých regiónoch, ale aj v ich okolí.


  Κυριάκος Μαυρονικόλας (S&D). - Κυρία Πρόεδρε, θα ήθελα και εγώ, συμβάλλοντας στη σημερινή συζήτηση, να υποδείξω ότι πράγματι οι ενέργειες και οι στάσεις μας είναι οι αρμόζουσες και σίγουρα ήρθε ο καιρός για την αναγνώριση ενός παλαιστινιακού κράτους και ότι αυτή η πολιτική γραμμή, με ορθή πρόταση από τη δική μας πλευρά, να τύχει και ενίσχυσης στο επίπεδο της Γενικής Συνέλευσης των Ηνωμένων Εθνών.

Δεύτερον, θα ήθελα να υπογραμμίσω ότι εκτιμώ ιδιαίτερα τη δράση της κυρίας Ashton σε αυτή την περίοδο, για να υποδείξω ότι πέτυχε τουλάχιστον να εκφράσει μια ενιαία γραμμή εκ μέρους της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης σε ένα τέτοιο σημαντικό θέμα. Είναι δε γεγονός ότι μια συνεχιζόμενη προσπάθεια από μέρους της θα μπορέσει να πετύχει μια ενιαία εξωτερική πολιτική εκ μέρους της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης στο σύνολό της, ιδιαίτερα στα θέματα τα οποία είναι αμέσου επικαιρότητας και έχουν να κάνουν με τεράστιες προσπάθειες λαών για την εθνική τους επιβίωση.


  Izaskun Bilbao Barandica (ALDE). - Señora Presidenta, señora Ashton, Europa debe adoptar una posición conjunta y acorde con el Derecho internacional en este momento definitivo del conflicto entre Palestina e Israel.

Si queremos el final de la violencia y de las vulneraciones de los derechos humanos, todos los Estados miembros debemos apoyar la aspiración de Palestina a estar representada como Estado en la Asamblea General de las Naciones Unidas.

Además, hay que denunciar ya la ilegalidad de los asentamientos israelíes y abogar por la desaparición del muro de la vergüenza construido por Israel. Ambas cuestiones vulneran la legalidad internacional y son un obstáculo para la paz.

Del mismo modo, cabe exigir a los palestinos que reconozcan el Estado de Israel y cesen los ataques armados y de todo tipo que, en ocasiones, parten de la franja de Gaza hacia territorio israelí.

Pensemos cómo se sentirían si tuviéramos que atravesar cada día un check point o vivir separados de la familia por un muro que convierte doscientos metros en cincuenta kilómetros, el trabajo en una quimera, el desarrollo en un imposible y la arbitrariedad y el abuso de poder en moneda cotidiana.

Estamos hablando de justicia y respeto de la legalidad internacional, pero también de humanidad.


  Andrew Henry William Brons (NI). - Madam President, the policy of the party that I represent towards the Israeli-Palestinian dispute is one of neutrality. We do not believe that the United Kingdom should be involved in any dispute on one side or the other. However, I would hope that this would not be a neutrality of indifference, because I too would like to see an enduring peace between these two peoples. But neutrality demands an even-handed approach.

The UN, in 1947, envisaged in General Assembly Resolution 181 two separate states, one Jewish and one Palestinian. If one state deserves recognition, so does the other. If a negotiated peace is not a precondition for the recognition of Israel, nor should such a negotiated peace be a precondition for the recognition of Palestine.

I believe that it would be easier for the government of a recognised Palestinian state to restrain and control the activities of its citizens than for the head of an ill-defined entity to restrain and control its inhabitants. Furthermore, it will be easier for a recognised state to negotiate peace with authority.


  Ioan Enciu (S&D). - În primul rând doresc să vă felicit pentru întreaga dumneavoastră activitate. Soluţionarea conflictului israelo - palestinian se poate realiza numai prin negocieri directe şi responsabile între cele două părţi cu sprijinul comunităţii internaţionale. De aceea, consider că orice acţiune unilaterală ar fi trebuit evitată, deoarece aceasta afectează încrederea reciprocă şi pune în pericol continuarea procesului de pace. Ieşirea din impasul provocat de acţiunea unilaterală a Autorităţii Palestiniene la ONU trebuie să fie reluarea imediată a negocierilor directe între cele două părţi sub supravegherea Quartetului. Cred că este momentul ca Autoritatea Palestiniană să dovedească că este dedicată soluţiei negocierilor directe şi, la fel şi în egală măsură, Israelul trebuie să fie dispus la compromisuri reale în cadrul acestor negocieri. Soluţia celor două state independente, plecând de la graniţele din 1967, este singura viabilă pentru pace.


  Hannu Takkula (ALDE). - Arvoisa puhemies, uuden valtion perustamisen täytyy perustua historiaan ja kansainvälisiin sopimuksiin. Niin kuin me hyvin tiedämme, tuolla alueella ei ole koskaan ollut Palestiinan valtiota, vaan 1900-luvulla kansainvälinen yhteisö on kolme kertaa luovuttanut tämän alueen Israelille, ensin Balfourin julistuksen ja sitten kansainliiton ja YK:n kautta.

Haluan kysyä myös korkealta edustajalta Lady Ashtonilta, onko Euroopan unioni arvoyhteisö? Uskommeko me todella demokratiaan, ihmisoikeuksiin, mielipiteenvapauteen ja oikeusvaltioperiaatteeseen? Jos asia on näin, niin kuin haluan uskoa, niin onko Hamas, joka on tällä hetkellä Palestiinan hallituksessa, hyväksynyt kvartetin, jossa EU:kin on mukana, ennakkoehdot terrorin lopettamisesta, Israelin tunnustamisesta ja aikaisemmista sopimuksista ja niiden hyväksymisestä?

Lisäksi haluan vielä kysyä, onko Euroopan unioni valmis yhtymään Abbasin ajatukseen siitä, että pitäisi luoda jonkinlainen juutalaisvapaa Palestiina? Eivätkö tällaiset lausunnot ole hyvin antisemitistisiä? Tässä suhteessa Euroopan pitäisi seistä omilla arvoillaan ja selvästi sanoa, että me tuemme demokratiaa ja ihmisoikeuksia. Israel on ainoa demokratia Lähi-idässä.


  Catherine Ashton, Vice-President of the Commission/High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy. − Madam President, can I just say to Honourable Members that we have seen the debate laid out before us? If you add up all the different views expressed in this House, you will find that they reflect, and are reflected in, many of the conversations that I have had, not just in the European Union, but with many other countries as well.

Let us start where we agree. We agree that there should be a Palestinian state. Everybody supports that, including Israel. I agree with all of you who have said that it is important to see a Palestinian state come into being as soon as possible. The question is how to support the Palestinian state into being in a way that will bring long-term peace and security to its people and to the people of Israel, who will be its neighbours next door.

I would argue that we are discussing the question of how – not if, not whether, not any other question, but how – to make sure that is achieved. It has been the view of the European Union, the view of this House and the view of Member States for a long time that the most effective way to ensure long-term stability and security for the people of Israel and the people of Palestine is through an agreement between the two on borders, on security, on the rights of refugees, on the issue of Jerusalem, on all of the issues that are very familiar to everybody here.

That is what I am determined upon. I am determined upon reality. I am determined upon making sure that the desire of the people, the desire of President Abbas and Prime Minister Fayyad, is achieved and is achieved in a way that they can be sure is going to bring that peace and security to them and to the region. That is what drives me and what motivates me to work with the Member States, to work with you, to work with my colleagues in the Commission, and to work internationally with the Quartet and – way beyond the Quartet – with many countries with whom I have discussed this issue, not just in New York last week, but over the past two years.

I want to be clear about one thing, namely about settlements. I have condemned it every time a settlement announcement has been made – six times this year from me, plus one local one and one Quartet one. I have checked the numbers. The announcement that was made today is an announcement of the continuation of a series of legal moves following on from an announcement that was made in 2009. I said earlier on that I deeply regretted that, having condemned that original announcement, we have now seen a move further forward. We have made that position clear, not just in this House, but also to the Israeli Government.

Can I also say that, instead of shouting about it – which is very easy to do, perhaps without listening for the response that you get – I say this to Prime Minister Netanyahu directly. Each time I have met him – and I have met him many times – I have made it clear that we consider settlements to be illegal under international law, and that he should stop announcing them and, more importantly, stop building them. I do not accept, I am afraid, what is said to me that somehow, by not using a particular word, I have moved away from my commitment, because I am the one who, on your behalf, is saying it to the person who has the power to make the difference. I will continue to do so in every conversation, not just because it is wrong.

I think that it is wrong to get people to live in a place from which, when you look at a negotiated settlement, they are probably going to have to move. That does not make any sense, to me, for the people who are moving in to that area. It is not a good move if you believe – as I do – that we have to reach a conclusion and a settlement for this conflict that is going to be based upon – as we have said consistently – the 1967 borders, with agreements on moving bits of land around, but which give the Palestinians a viable contiguous state. That is going to mean that there will have to be changes. It is therefore in the interests of all the people of Israel and Palestine to get there and make sure that where people move and where people live is somewhere they can live for the rest of their lives if they choose to.

I also want to make it clear that I have said to Israel that I do believe in President Abbas and Prime Minister Fayyad. They have people with whom they can be proud to negotiate. I believe that President Abbas and Prime Minister Fayyad, who I have had the privilege to get to know over the last two years, are people who hold the values that we hold dear in their heart. I believe that they want to see a democratic Palestine, based on the rule of law and the values of human rights. I believe that Israel could do no better than to negotiate with them. I have also said that directly to Prime Minister Netanyahu, to Foreign Minister Lieberman and to other members inside and outside the Israeli Government and in the Knesset. I will continue to keep saying that, because I believe it to be true.

I have said many times that I think that the work that Prime Minister Fayyad has done has been remarkable in that, according not to me but to the World Bank and other institutions, he has completed the building of the institutions that will create the state of Palestine and will enable them to be able to function as a state – an important element if they are going to become a country, in the very near future I hope. I was fortunate enough to go with Prime Minister Fayyad to lay the foundation stone in Jenin, a town that has seen a lot of conflict but where they are rebuilding the architecture of the government buildings and which we, as the European Union, are privileged to be able to fund.

I said in the UN when I met with the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee under the chairmanship of Norway – to whom I pay great tribute – that I felt this was a good investment of our resources, because you can see what our money and our support has actually built and achieved. I think that we should be proud to be investing in the work of Prime Minister Fayyad. As I say, I pay tribute to him.

We have to make sure that everything that we are doing on this is actually going to help to lead to the results. That is why I have been working with the Israeli Government, the Palestinian Authority, the Arab League, the United States, Canada, Russia, and the UN especially – because I agree with what has been said about the value and importance of the UN in all this. I could not agree more. I think the United Nations are critical to all this, but what matters is what we are actually able to achieve. The point about what we did in the Quartet statement was that we laid out a time frame and invited the parties to now come together in that time frame. There are issues that they will have to resolve, which is why we suggested they pre-meet. There are issues that the Quartet envoys will need to discuss, which is why they will pre-meet with the parties, but the objective is to get this thing moving.

I understand the frustration in this House. I have only been doing this for up to two years. I can tell you that I have spent more time on this than on anything else I have done. I have to tell you that, today, I am actually as worried, if not more so, about what is happening in the north of Kosovo, as you would expect me to be. It is really important that whatever we do finds a conclusion that is really going to last. I am not going to do something that is just rhetoric. I am much more interested in a solution that is going to be for real.

Of course, when they come to negotiate, they will have to tackle all these issues in the conclusions. Of course, incidentally, we believe in the International Criminal Court. That has never been discussed as part of a conclusion of negotiations – nothing of that kind –, but we do need to make sure that we actually get that. I will continue to do that, based on the fact that I am also trying to carry 27 Member States along the road with me.

It is really important to understand how much the unity of the European Union on this subject is valued in the region, not just in Israel, not just with the Palestinian people and the Israeli people, but with the Arab League and with the countries in the region. They really want to see us stick together and see that happen for real. You will understand that that means that I also have to be alive to the starting points, the history, the culture and the connections that all 27 countries have. I am sensitive to that.

It is an achievement for the European Union that we are still together. We are continuing to work to stay there, because what we offer, united in this process, is much more than radical positions on either end of the spectrum, or even the bulk of countries coming together in the middle. It is the fact that we are 27 speaking with one voice and one message that makes a big difference, but it is not easy. We have to work at this and keep working at it. That is why your support today is so important, because it enables me to take that away.

I have said enough on this. Let me just say one or two things about other countries because, rightly so, Honourable Members raised one or two other issues. Mr Fox raised the issue of Yemen. I agree on the importance of working hard with the GCC. I mentioned that we coordinated our statements on Yemen very carefully. There is calm at the moment, but I am worried about some outbreaks of violence that have gone on in the last few days. We urge President Saleh to continue with the process and to make sure that the work that is being carried out by his Vice-President can come forward.

On Libya, as you know, we have had teams going to Tripoli. We have a team there at the present time that is setting up the long-term operation. On the specific issue of borders, we are launching a dialogue on migration, mobility and security with Tunisia and Morocco. We are ready to do the same with Libya. That specifically brings in this point on migration and mobility – not just on security, although of course that is very important.

Women are full of hope in the region. We have to make sure that we do not let them down. One of the key elements of the discussions in New York was women coming together to try to make sure that we are able to offer the support of the capacity-building programmes already in place in Libya. Looking after women who are victims in all of this violence – and there are many of them – and also ensuring the participation of women right the way through the system is a huge issue that is of incredible importance to me.

Finally, regarding the issues of rules and conditionality, Stefan Füle has set out very well many times in this House the point about ‘more for more’. This is the idea that we make sure that reform is met with greater support, but also this mutual accountability of ensuring that we have respect for each other in what we do, that we do what we say we are going to do on both sides, and that we deliver what we say we are going to deliver to help support these communities into the future. Then, of course, there is the coordination which is so important, between not just the different the European institutions, but also the Member States. In Libya, that is going to be really important if we are going to be able to offer the support that we want to.

Madam President, thank you for indulging me on time. Honourable Members, thank you very much for an important debate.



  La Présidente. - J'ai reçu, conformément à l'article 110, paragraphe 2, du règlement, six propositions de résolutions(1).

Le débat est clos.

Le vote aura lieu jeudi, le 29 septembre 2011, à 12 heures.

Déclarations écrites (article 149)



  Ioan Mircea Paşcu (S&D), in writing. – Ever since the Arab Spring began, one question imposed itself: would those revolutionary developments speed up or delay resolution of the Middle East conflict, which is one that has the potential to ignite an international conflagration? Well, now, many months after, although things are no clearer, one can detect a slight tilt of the balance towards the latter. In that respect, I am particularly concerned at the possibility that the new revolutionary authorities in those countries, faced with the impossibility of fulfilling the high expectations of their populations, might try to deflect popular energy towards Israel.

This might be true even for the Palestinian authorities, which probably saw in the recent request for UN state recognition a way to escape possible contestation from ordinary Palestinians, emboldened by the example of their other Arab brothers. It looks as if, recently, both Hamas and Fatah have been losing ground. Irrespective of whether these suppositions are true or not, the potential implications of a worsening of the Middle East conflict would only underline the crucial importance of EU involvement and support in the region.




(1)Voir procès-verbal.

Avis juridique - Politique de confidentialité