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Onsdagen den 27 november 2019 - Strasbourg Reviderad upplaga

18. Situationen i Mellanöstern i stort, inklusive krisen i Iran, Irak och Libanon (debatt)
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  President. – The next item on the agenda is the debate on the Statement by the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy on the situation in the broader Middle East region, including the crisis in Iran, Iraq and Lebanon (2019/2917(RSP)).

I remind you that it is possible to request catch-the-eye and blue cards using both the standard registration and the electronic system. Instructions are available at the entrance of the hemicycle. Blue-card requests are accepted only after the round of the speakers on behalf of the political groups.

The debate will be opened by the Vice-President of the Commission, High / Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Ms Mogherini.

 
  
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  Federica Mogherini, Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy. – Mr President, on the streets of the Middle East in Baghdad, in Beirut, in Tehran and other cities, I’ve witnessed large demonstrations, which are still ongoing in all countries.

Events are unfolding and each case is different, yet there seem to be some common causes. The triggers have been specific policy initiatives but the protests have then expanded, targeting inequality, sectarianism and corruption and asking for better governance and better job opportunities.

Our response to these protests has common elements, too. We have condemned any act of violence, from all parties. We have urged restraint in handling the demonstrations. We have asked for respect for freedom of expression and prompt investigation of instances of violence. We have also demanded that external actors always respect this country’s sovereignty.

Now, let me briefly comment on a few specific cases, the ones you mentioned on the title of the debate. First on Iraq. The challenges that Iraq is facing are unique. The country is finally coming out of a long conflict, it needs reconciliation and reconstruction. It also needs to deliver on its people’s aspirations to a better life and better opportunities for all.

These expectations need to be fulfilled if Iraq is to stabilise in the long term, and I’ve seen myself during my last visit there – in July, if I’m not wrong – how far the country has come when it comes to being ready to work on reconciliation and reconstruction, but also how fragile this progress is. And I think we are now seeing this clearly.

From the beginning of the protests we have been asking for dialogue and steps to quickly address the protesters’ concerns, including those steps suggested by the UN mission. This is even more urgent today. We also continue to encourage Iraq to maintain its policy of constructive engagement with all its neighbours in times when its role as a voice of wisdom is essential in the region.

We Europeans have always said that we want to help the people of Iraq win the peace, and this is what the people of Iraq are asking right now. So, we will continue to be on their side and to accompany Iraq on its path towards a stronger, more inclusive and more just democracy.

In Iran, the recent protests also stem from genuine frustration with the current economic hardships. Citizens have the right to peacefully demonstrate, and there is no justification for the disproportionate use of violence by the security forces. All reports of incidents deserve swift and full investigation by the relevant independent authorities.

I also want to emphasise that we expect the Iranian authorities to ensure the free flow of information and access to the internet at all times. Let me add something that is clear and obvious, but it is important to clarify this once again, that this has nothing to do and should have nothing to do with the implementation of the nuclear deal with Iran. We continue to fully believe in the diplomatic and security value of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), of the nuclear deal with Iran. Yet it is no secret that the preservation of this agreement has become increasingly difficult.

And let me announce today that we will have a joint commission with Iran that will be convened on 6 December to this end. As you know, together with the role of High Representative also comes the role of a coordinator of the Joint Commission of the JCPOA of the nuclear deal with Iran, and we have worked in this capacity so far very hard to keep the unity, not only of the Europeans – that has been done – but also of the participants to the nuclear deal that have remained in the agreement after the US withdrew.

And I believe this unity is key to preserve the agreements as much as possible. We all agreed just a few weeks ago that we must spare no efforts to preserve the deal, and let me also say that I wish my successor all the best as he takes over also this difficult essential role: that of coordinating the Joint Commission of the JCPOA.

Third and last, but not least at all, let me say a few words on Lebanon where protests have led to the prime minister’s resignation. Lebanon is a very special partner for the European Union and it holds a very special place in our heart. Today, the people of Lebanon are asking for good governance, good governance and good governance, beyond any sectarian line, and this is truly inspiring, as Lebanon society often is.

It is urgent to address the demands of the Lebanese people while preserving the peace and the stability that Lebanon has worked so hard to achieve in all these years. This calls, first and foremost, for the swift formation of a functioning government to ensure political and economic stability, followed by the rapid and decisive implementation of effective reforms on governance and corruption, in line with the Lebanese people’s aspirations. This moment can become somehow an opportunity to deliver the reforms that Lebanon so urgently needs while, at the same time, preserving the country’s stability and resilience.

And let me add one word on something that is not on our focus specifically tonight but is still there. Let us not forget that the whole Middle East remains an incredibly fragile place. We have just discussed the situation in Israel and Palestine, let us not forget that the situation in Syria is still far from being settled. On the contrary, in the north-west of Syria, the situation has got worse once again, only a few weeks after the Turkish military operation opened a new front in the north-east of Syria.

So, regional tensions are still running high, and this is putting even more importance and pressure on those in the region and beyond the region who are trying to calm down the situation and find sustainable outcomes to the current dynamics. In these years, we’ve been trying to build multilateral solutions to all crises in the region and we have worked very closely with our partners – including Lebanon and Iraq – to stabilise those countries to bring investment for reconstruction and economic growth and to support these countries in their reform agendas.

Each of these countries will have to find its own way to overcome their current difficulties. Nobody can do it for them. But the European Union will continue, I believe, to support dialogue and accompany reforms. It is one of the regions that is closest to us, I often say it is our common region, and the European Union, I believe, will continue to engage as a reliable partner and as a force for peace in the Middle East.

 
  
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  Ivan Štefanec, on behalf of the PPE Group. – Mr President, we have heard about the recent demonstrations and uprisings in Iran. These protests, which have been going on for over 11 days, took place in all 31 provinces of Iran and in 176 cities. The main opposition has announced that the number of those killed during the Iranian people’s nationwide uprising is over 450, but the number of deaths could be much higher.

The names of over 150 of the young men and women who were brutally murdered by Iran’s security forces have already been published and this is really a very sad list. For example, this list includes Nikta Esfandani, who was just 14 years old, and in her case the regime’s officials told her family that since she was only 14, and was a kid, they would not ask for the cost of the bullets – this really is unbelievable. President Rouhani’s government, which some regarded as so-called moderate, quickly shut down the internet to prevent the news and videos of these crimes from coming out of Iran. The government is also refusing to hand over the bodies of those killed to their families or preventing funerals for them.

I am very concerned about the fate and treatment of over 10 000 detainees. Some of the regime’s top officials have hinted that many of those who have been arrested will soon be executed – executed by public hanging even. They are especially focusing on the members of the resistance units of PMOI, which the regime has blamed for this uprising.

The crimes carried out by the Iranian regime are, by any measure, crimes against humanity. We must not allow the people who have come onto the streets to stand for their rights to be arrested, tortured or silenced. I should remind you that the Iranian opposition leader Ms Rajavi has called on the United Nations to dispatch quickly fact-finding missions to Iran, and that the regime leaders must face justice for perpetrating crimes against humanity.

To conclude, we in this Parliament should stand with the people of Iran and I urge the EU High Representative to do the same by ending current policy because, from my point of view, this current policy has failed and will only damage the credibility of Europe, not only amongst the people of Iran but also among people around the world. People are watching us and wait for our action. I believe that the European Union should act now.

 
  
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  Isabel Santos, em nome do Grupo S&D. – Senhor Presidente, assistimos a um período marcado pelo eclodir de movimentos sociais, de contestação política em diversos pontos do globo, tão complexos quanto à sua natureza e tão imprevisíveis quanto ao seu desfecho que não admitem generalizações ou simplismos na sua análise.

Contudo, podemos identificar os níveis de pobreza, o agudizar das condições humanitárias, a falta de liberdade e de expectativas, sobretudo para os mais jovens, a corrupção e a pouca confiança no poder político como elementos que têm conduzido a fortes tensões sociais.

Assim acontece com os protestos populares no Iraque, no Irão e no Líbano, países marcados por fortes convulsões internas e por crises, muitas vezes alimentadas por jogos de poder externos. Mas a compreensão de tal facto não pode, todavia, atenuar o nível da nossa apreensão diante da violência que, em diferentes graus, está a ser exercida contra os manifestantes. No Líbano, a violência repressiva contra os manifestantes exercida por grupos identificados não pode ser jamais tolerada.

No Irão, a repressão dos protestos pacíficos gerados pela subida dos preços dos combustíveis, o corte da Internet, as detenções arbitrárias, a tortura, os mais de 100 mortos e os apelos radicais à aplicação da pena de morte são inaceitáveis e levam-nos a apelar ao abandono do uso da violência e à busca do diálogo inclusivo, única via para a resolução da crise económica e social.

Finalmente, no Iraque, os últimos eventos devem merecer da parte da União Europeia e dos seus Estados-Membros uma resposta que, entre outros aspetos, deve passar pela imediata suspensão do fornecimento de tecnologia que possa ser utilizada para violações dos direitos humanos.

 
  
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  Bernard Guetta, au nom du groupe Renew. – Monsieur le Président, le sang a coulé à Téhéran et coule toujours à Bagdad, avec ses centaines de morts. Pourtant, derrière cette tragédie, c’est à la naissance d’un nouveau Proche-Orient que nous assistons.

Observons d’abord ces manifestations à Bagdad et à Beyrouth. Dans ces cortèges, il n’y a ni sunnites, ni Kurdes, ni chiites, ni chrétiens; il y a ici des Libanais, là-bas des Irakiens, des citoyens de ces deux pays, protestant coude à coude contre la dégradation de leurs conditions de vie, l’ampleur de la corruption et l’effondrement des services publics. Personne n’aurait cru que les frontières communautaires puissent ainsi s’effacer, mais dans la colère sociale, un siècle après leur création par les puissances coloniales, ces pays mosaïques semblent enfin devenir des États nations. C’est une rupture.

Second tournant de ces dernières semaines, l’Iran est maintenant en difficulté. Au Liban, le Hezbollah, ce bras armé de la République islamique, est aussi contesté que tous les autres partis. En Irak, toutes les communautés, chiites en tête, dénoncent la mainmise de Téhéran sur le gouvernement et l’appareil d’État. Ces deux pays sont en révolte contre le protectorat que Téhéran voudrait leur imposer et c’est un grave revers pour ce régime au moment même où les Iraniens dénoncent l’envolée des prix et contestent les fondements mêmes de la théocratie.

Il y a donc plus de vingt ans maintenant que ce pouvoir va de crises en crises, mais leur rythme s’accélère tandis que s’accroît leur profondeur. La puissance que l’on voyait ascendante au Proche-Orient ne l’est peut-être plus et tout pourrait en être changé dans cette région dont les équilibres se modifient de mois en mois. Or tout cela, chers collègues, se passe à nos portes. Plus que jamais, il faudrait être aveugle et sourd pour ne pas vouloir affirmer notre union sur la scène internationale et la doter de tous les instruments d’une puissance.

 
  
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  Hannah Neumann, on behalf of the Verts/ALE Group. – Mr President, 30 years ago people took to the streets in Europe and they stood up for freedom and for democracy. They were not organised, but they were united in one claim: ‘we are the people’.

Two weeks ago in this House we congratulated ourselves on the successful demonstrations and how they have changed our lives for the better. Since this summer we have seen demonstrations in many countries around the Middle East. Algeria: ongoing. Egypt: violent and cruel crackdown. Lebanon: a Prime Minister stepping down and an old elite clinging to power. Iraq: their protest is met with the utmost violence. About 350 are dead. Iran: a massive media blackout. We don’t even have viable information, but more than 100 are dead for sure.

In all of these uprisings we see people taking their claims to the street against corruption and for participation, against repression and for democracy. What is new in this protest is that they don’t care anymore about sectarian or regional boundaries. We are all Iraqis is what they shout in the streets of Baghdad, and that is apparently scaring the old elites.

A tear gas canister fired at the head of a 17-year-old in Baghdad, a mother in jail for posting on Facebook in Cairo, protesters greeting security forces with flowers and met with live ammunition in Shiraz in Iran. And we, the European Union, the ones that have just celebrated 30 years of peaceful revolution, we are bystanders once more.

In Iraq we have been present for years. We have supported with humanitarian aid. We have had reconstruction projects. We actually have a mission on security sector reform in the very same country where medics are shot in the back when treating the wounded, where snipers are firing at peaceful protesters. And those in the streets of Iraq, they refused the interference of Iran and the US and they are very clear about that.

The UN has lost its credibility and protesters are clearly, clearly calling on us, the European Union, to fill the void, to organise dialogue, to stop the killing, to investigate the abuses, to do a proper security-sector reform and to just teach them crowd control. And the EU is issuing statements without commitments.

Let me be clear, doing nothing or only a little in such a situation can actually do a lot of harm. We failed the demonstrators of the Arab Spring in 2011, and we should not let them down once again. We are all human beings and we are human beings with human rights.

 
  
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  Jérôme Rivière, au nom du groupe ID. – Monsieur le Président, Liban, Irak, Iran: la région est soumise depuis longtemps à des ingérences étrangères et à de perpétuelles interférences régionales.

Déstabilisé par une intervention américaine non réfléchie, l’Irak n’en finit pas de se disloquer autour de ses fractures communautaires. L’Iran, étouffé par un régime totalitaire mais bousculé avec précipitation par les États-Unis, s’enfonce loin de nos yeux, la communication numérique ayant été coupée, dans une répression violente de l’aspiration d’un peuple à retrouver sa liberté.

Dans ces deux pays, nos interventions maladroites et souvent intéressées conduisent au chaos. Prenons soin d’éviter les mêmes erreurs au Liban. Pour paraphraser Montesquieu, qui recommandait de ne toucher aux lois que d’une main tremblante, appliquons cette sage précaution à cette civilisation du Levant, qui nous a apporté les grandes spiritualités monothéistes, le début de la civilisation urbaine mais aussi l’agriculture.

Les Libanais, dans une période qui s’apparente à une véritable révolution, ne portent que des revendications qui leur sont propres. Ne voir flotter au cœur des manifestations que des drapeaux du Liban est un véritable signe d’espoir. Notre responsabilité, c’est de ne pas pousser au pire et d’assister ce pays dans la préservation d’un système confessionnel, qui permet à des communautés religieuses si différentes de vivre ensemble. Cet équilibre au Liban est la meilleure réponse à la barbarie de l’islamisme qu’a tenté d’installer Daech dans la région. Avec nos histoires nationales respectives, assistons cette nation pour qu’elle sorte apaisée de cette période. Maintenons les aides dont les populations ont besoin. Défendre le pluralisme au Liban, c’est le défendre aussi en Europe.

 
  
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  Anna Fotyga, on behalf of the ECR Group. – Mr President, there are traces of Iran’s operations all over the region, in every conflict, every war, and this presence is detrimental to stability and peace there. Yet, the worst of the actions has been reserved for Iran’s own population that is multi-ethnic and diversified, yet acting in accord against the regime of the mullahs recently and during the past two years.

The recent protests are massive: in all 31 provinces, in the majority of Iranian cities. The internet has been suspended and there are really barbaric, violent acts by the regime against populations. There are over 300 dead already during the recent 11 days, more than 10 000 have been arrested and we should be concerned about their fate and their whereabouts. As happened many years ago with political prisoners, their fate seems to be the fate of victims of judiciary crimes. In view of a possible crime against humanity, we are obliged by international law to intervene, to act, instead of smiling at mullahs.

 
  
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  Cornelia Ernst, im Namen der GUE/NGL-Fraktion. – Herr Präsident! Was in den letzten Wochen im Mittleren Osten geschah, ist wirklich eine Tragödie.

Dass im Iran Tausende wegen der sozialen Schieflage des Landes auf die Straße gingen, war und ist ihr gutes Recht. Und dass sie das trotz Demonstrationsverbot gemacht haben, das trotz fehlender Rede- und Kommunikationsfreiheit wagten, das hat sie enormen Mut gekostet und so viele Menschen das Leben.

Nein, auf Demonstranten schießt man nicht, und das muss man auch so klar sagen. Der Tod von Menschen ist auch kein Kollateralschaden im Namen einer größeren oder welch anderen Sache auch immer. So stehe ich hier und verneige mich – auch im Namen unserer Fraktion, aber auch vieler anderer – vor den getöteten Demonstrantinnen und Demonstranten, vor ihren Angehörigen, Frauen, Kindern und Eltern.

Herr Präsident, im Namen der Iran-Delegation, deren Vorsitzende ich bin, wende ich mich an Sie und fordere Sie auf, einen Brief an Ihren Kollegen im Iran – an das iranische Parlament – zu schreiben, weil ich der Meinung bin, dass nicht nur die Kommission reagieren muss, sondern auch das Europäische Parlament. Wir erwarten das von Ihnen.

Zugleich sage ich offen: Ich fühle Scham, dass wir als Europäer buchstäblich nichts Wirksames zustande gebracht haben, um den verheerenden US-Sanktionen etwas entgegenzusetzen. Weil uns offensichtlich die transatlantischen Beziehungen teuer sind, sind uns die Hoffnungen vieler Iranerinnen und Iraner auf Zukunft nur noch billig. Die Enttäuschung über den Westen ist riesig.

Ich sage Ihnen eins: Wir sind Teil des Problems, und mit dieser halbherzigen EU-Politik muss endlich Schluss gemacht werden.

 
  
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  Fabio Massimo Castaldo (NI). – Signor Presidente, onorevoli colleghi, la situazione mediorientale è così complessa che andrebbe forse affrontata in modo più strutturato. Se da un lato è vero che esiste una situazione di crisi diffusa nella Mezzaluna sciita, bisogna ammettere che le specificità dei singoli paesi meriterebbero discussioni separate.

Mi voglio per questo concentrare su un paese molto vicino al mio cuore, piccolo ma dall'incredibile importanza strategica per l'intera regione: il Libano. Beirut sta affrontando una crisi senza precedenti, sia politica che economica, con un debito al 150 % del PIL, un'inflazione fuori controllo e il rating creditizio in picchiata, e l'economia è sull'orlo del collasso. Servirebbero urgenti riforme, impossibili da realizzare data l'altrettanto complessa situazione politica, precipitata dopo le dimissioni del Primo ministro Ḥarīrī e le difficoltà nel formare un nuovo governo.

Cari colleghi, sappiamo tutti quanto questo paese sia cruciale geopoliticamente e le conseguenze nefaste che ci sarebbero nel caso di una sua destabilizzazione protratta. Serve un nuovo governo che si possa impegnare a realizzare le riforme economiche necessarie, ma che al contempo si impegni a combattere contro la diffusa corruzione, che rimane una delle cause che ha portato alle manifestazioni di piazza.

Ma da solo il Libano non può uscire da questa crisi, anche considerando che tuttora ad oggi vivono nel paese circa 1,5 milioni di rifugiati siriani. Serve un deciso e tempestivo supporto dell'Unione europea, molto più ingente, molto più importante dell'assistenza che già stiamo fornendo. Invito la nuova Commissione ad affrontare questa emergenza con la massima celerità visto che le conseguenze di un marcato intervento sarebbero imprevedibili e sicuramente drammatiche.

 
  
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  Στέλιος Κυμπουρόπουλος (PPE). – Κύριε Πρόεδρε, αγαπητοί συνάδελφοι, διαφωνώ με αυτούς που λένε ότι σε αυτή την αίθουσα έχουμε υπάρξει υπερβολικοί για τα ανθρώπινα δικαιώματα, καθώς η Ευρώπη οφείλει να είναι ο φάρος της δημοκρατίας, των ανθρωπίνων δικαιωμάτων, της ανάπτυξης διεθνώς. Όμως, είναι αλήθεια ότι είμαστε ιδεαλιστές. Θα θέλαμε πολύ η ευρύτερη Μέση Ανατολή, η γειτονιά μας, να μοιράζεται τις ίδιες αξίες με εμάς απέναντι στις γυναίκες, τα παιδιά, τους νέους, τους ανάπηρους, αλλά και τους αντιφρονούντες, τους αλλόπιστους και τις διαφορετικές εθνότητες.

Όμως, άλλο Σουηδία και Ελλάδα κι άλλο Αίγυπτος και Συρία. Απ’ τον ενθουσιασμό μας κάποτε μπορεί να υποστηρίξαμε και κάποιες ζωηρές επαναστάσεις, που έφεραν πολύ, πολύ χειρότερα καθεστώτα από τα αρχικώς ανατραπέντα. Άρα έχουμε πλέον μάθει πως ο ιδεαλισμός πρέπει να εξισορροπείται με λίγο ρεαλισμό και εικόνα του αποτελέσματος. Πρέπει να πονηρευτούμε, καθώς παράγοντες αστάθειας δρουν στην ευρύτερη Μέση Ανατολή, παραμονεύοντας να εγκαταστήσουν σκληρά οπισθοδρομικά καθεστώτα.

Με όσες αδυναμίες κι αν έχουν, η Αίγυπτος και το Ισραήλ είναι βράχοι φιλίας και οι πλέον σταθεροί και αξιόπιστοι εταίροι της Ευρώπης στη Μέση Ανατολή. Και γνωρίζουμε καλά ότι αμφότεροι φέρουν την πρόθεση της αυτοβελτίωσης. Αναφορικά με το Ιράκ, φοβάμαι ότι, όσο δεν στηρίζουμε δυναμικά την ανοικοδόμησή του, θα το μετανιώνουμε. 11 από τα 36 εκατομμύρια της χώρας χρήζουν άμεσης ανθρωπιστικής βοήθειας. Αυτοί οι άνθρωποι είναι δυνητικοί πρόσφυγες. Μπορεί να μη βρίσκονται ακόμα στην ευρωπαϊκή γη, αλλά είμαι σίγουρος ότι o καθένας από εσάς μπορεί να καταλάβει τον πατέρα και τη μητέρα που θα κάνει τα πάντα για να σώσει το παιδί του. Κι αυτοί θα αποτελέσουν την κύρια μάζα του ξεριζωμού. Είμαι σίγουρος ότι, πέραν της ανάσχεσης της προσφυγιάς, ο ανθρωπισμός μας παρακινεί να βοηθήσουμε αυτούς τους ανθρώπους που έχουν ανάγκη. Πολλούς παραξενεύει ο μεγάλος αριθμός αιτούντων άσυλο. Πρώτοι αυτοί μπορούν να αποδείξουν ότι δεν φείδονται αλτρουισμού και θέλουν να βοηθήσουν τους ανθρώπους που έχουν ανάγκη στον τόπο τους, προτού αναγκαστούν να προσφύγουν στη δική μας βοήθεια.

Στο Ιράκ γνωρίζουμε καλά το Νταές. Θα ηττηθεί ολοκληρωτικά μόνο όταν η χώρα σταθεροποιηθεί και αναπτυχθεί και πάλι. Είναι εξόχως ευρωπαϊκό χαρακτηριστικό να προνοούμε για να σταθεροποιούμε τα κράτη, προτού να πρέπει να αντιμετωπίσουμε νέα μεγαλύτερα προβλήματα αύριο. Αναφορικά με το Ιράν, ας υποστηρίξουμε ενεργά τις συμφωνίες μας. Ας στηρίξουμε το κοινό συναινετικό σχέδιο δράσης.

Ο Λίβανος είναι μια ώριμη δημοκρατία. Οι κατά βάση ειρηνικές διαδηλώσεις αποτελούν δείγμα της ποιότητας της κοινωνίας. Κατανοούμε τη μετάβαση σε μια τεχνοκρατική κυβέρνηση, που θα επιτρέψει στη χώρα να κάνει τις απαραίτητες μεταρρυθμίσεις και να προκηρύξει εκλογές. Η ευρωπαϊκή στάση προς τις χώρες της περιοχής οφείλει να είναι η εσωτερική σταθεροποίηση, με παράλληλη προώθηση των ανθρωπίνων δικαιωμάτων, η προάσπιση του διεθνούς δικαίου, η συνεργασία και το εμπόριο με ρήτρες αιρεσιμότητας.

 
  
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  Maria Arena (S&D). – Monsieur le Président, Madame Mogherini, je ne peux être que 100 %, voire 200 %, d’accord avec la déclaration que vous venez de faire au sujet de la situation au Moyen-Orient.

Il est vrai que le Moyen-Orient est en ébullition depuis un certain temps et, partout, les revendications qui naissent sont pour l’essentiel les mêmes: des revendications sociales et des revendications pour une bonne gouvernance. Je ne répéterai pas ce que mes collègues ont dit, que ce soit M. Guetta ou Mme Neumann. Partout, l’on revoit des gouvernements qui répondent à ces revendications – qui sont légitimes – par la répression et, souvent, trop souvent, par la violence.

L’Union européenne a un réel rôle à jouer en fondant sa politique étrangère sur le respect du droit, encore une fois, et sur le respect du multilatéralisme. L’Union européenne, contrairement à l’administration Trump, doit contribuer concrètement à la désescalade des tensions dans la région et continuer à défendre la paix et le respect des droits fondamentaux. La stabilité du Moyen-Orient, nous l’avons dit, passera par une transition démocratique que nous, Européens, nous devons soutenir par le dialogue – vous l’avez fait – mais aussi par le soutien et la protection des populations.

 
  
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  Klemen Grošelj (Renew). – Gospod predsednik! Bližnji vzhod postaja niz kriz in vojn, ki lahko regijo in soseščino potisnejo v še globlja brezna.

Poleg sirijske tragedije so v ali na robu brezna tudi Jemen, Irak in Libanon. Ironično pri tem je, da je ključ do rešitve mnogih problemov v rokah Irana, ki odločilno in usodno sooblikuje usodo regije.

Države regije so postale talke iranskega vpliva in politike preko tako imenovanega šiitskega polmeseca. Iran po propadu jedrskega sporazuma poleg jedrske karte zlorablja krize v regiji kot sredstva pritiska na regijo in na mednarodno skupnost. Gre za surovo real politiko, na katero niti EU niti mednarodna skupnost nimata odgovora, pri čemer ameriške sankcije ne vplivajo na vedenje Irana.

Širitev nestabilnosti v regiji pa vse bolj neposredno ogroža tudi varnost Evropske unije, zato novega skupnega predstavnika zunanje in varnostne politike pozivam, da se temu posveti prednostno in prepreči dodatno destabilizacijo regije, ki bi se med drugim odrazila tudi v povečanem številu beguncev na mejah Evropske unije.

 
  
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  Ernest Urtasun (Verts/ALE). – Señor presidente. Señora Mogherini, en pocos meses han estallado protestas sociales en varias zonas de Oriente Medio. Aunque puedan parecer aisladas, las protestas del Líbano, Irak e Irán tienen mucho en común en algunos aspectos: la provisión de servicios básicos, el desempleo, la corrupción. Las protestas antigubernamentales en estos tres países han sido duramente reprimidas, causando la muerte de más de trescientas personas, por ejemplo, en Irak. Y el bloqueo total a internet en Irán no ha permitido confirmar aún las más de doscientas muertes cifradas por varias ONG.

Desde este Parlamento tenemos que condenar el uso de la fuerza y los medios letales empleados por las fuerzas de seguridad iraníes e iraquíes para aplastar las protestas, en su mayoría pacíficas. Tenemos que hacer un llamamiento a las autoridades iraníes a que respeten los derechos a la libertad de reunión pacífica y a la libertad de expresión, incluyendo el levantamiento del bloqueo total del acceso a internet que ha sido decretado.

La subida de los precios de la gasolina, decretada por el Gobierno iraní, se suma al impacto de unas sanciones económicas impuestas por parte de la Administración estadounidense el pasado verano, que están teniendo un efecto devastador sobre la economía y la población iraní, y además, como sabemos, están poniendo en riesgo el futuro del acuerdo nuclear. Según las Naciones Unidas y varias ONG dichas sanciones económicas están haciendo sufrir muchísimo a la población de forma diaria y no tan solo afectan al Gobierno. Ello no exime, evidentemente, al régimen iraní de sus responsabilidades en lo que respecta a los derechos humanos de la población, que sabemos que es algo que también le preocupa a usted y que desde este Parlamento debemos constantemente reclamar.

En cualquier caso, desde Irán hasta el Líbano, pasando por Irak, los líderes de estos países deben escuchar a su pueblo e iniciar las reformas económicas que mejoren las condiciones de vida y el bienestar social de la población y acaben con la corrupción. Y nosotros, como Unión Europea, debemos tener una aproximación regional a la zona para entender y ser capaces de acompañar y de ser un actor de resolución de las distintas causas profundas que en estos momentos afectan a estos países y que tanta inestabilidad están generando.

 
  
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  Elena Lizzi (ID). – Signor Presidente, onorevoli colleghi, signora Alto rappresentante, voglio ancora ricordare i cinque militari italiani che sono stati feriti in un attentato nell'area di Kirkuk, in Iraq, proprio alla vigilia dell'anniversario della strage di Nassiriya.

In Iraq le manifestazioni di questi giorni sono le più intense dal 2005 e stanno avvenendo soprattutto nelle zone sciite: si tratta di persone che chiedono lavoro e lottano contro la corruzione. Sono rimasti finora estranei alle manifestazioni il Nord curdo e le aree interessate dalla conquista territoriale dello Stato islamico.

In Iraq si moltiplicano gli attentati e lo Stato islamico si sta riorganizzando. L'Unione europea non può restare a guardare.

Una delle opere che adornano il tunnel che da Baghdad passa sotto piazza Tahrir, centro delle proteste antigovernative, raffigura il volto di Gesù incoronato di spine, simbolo anche delle pene irachene. In Iraq ci sono anche cristiani, calati dal 2003 da un da un milione e mezzo a 250 000 e che rischiano di essere cancellati dopo duemila anni di storia. I capi delle chiese e delle comunità cristiane sostengono le manifestazioni popolari di protesta pacifica.

Anche Trump ha giustamente finanziato le organizzazioni cristiane irachene. Nell'Iraq il ruolo delle minoranze è fondamentale, quale garanzia che la regione non diventi scontro tra sunniti e sciiti. Anche l'Unione europea deve sostenere la minoranza cristiana irachena.

 
  
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  Charlie Weimers (ECR). – Mr President, I say to High Representative Mogherini: instead of bowing before the mullahs and stringing along the failed Iran deal, which only enables the regime, European leaders should raise the spirits of the Iranian people, throw off the hijab and state: we recognise that this is a regime that cares more about terrorists than its own people, that cannot tolerate dissent and free thought, that faces annual widespread protest, that orders soldiers to fire at will on their fellow citizens, that oppressed its people for decades.

In our hearts, we Europeans join the brave Iranian people in their outcry: jumhuuriya islami namikhaaham namikhaaham. ‘We don’t want an Islamic republic’.

 
  
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  Idoia Villanueva Ruiz (GUE/NGL). – Señor presidente, no solo América Latina está en medio de un terremoto político y social, también Oriente Medio. Irak, Líbano, Irán, Egipto, Sudán, Argelia: países que atraviesan profundas crisis en un Magreb y en un Oriente Medio que han sufrido la pelea descarnada por apropiarse de sus recursos.

Muchas personas salen a la calle y exigen pan, libertad y justicia social, dignidad, desde hace años. La respuesta ha sido más represión, más impunidad y más geopolítica del caos en una región arrasada: desde la invasión ilegal de los Estados Unidos en Irak al drama en Siria, Yemen y Libia, sin olvidarnos de la ocupación israelí en Palestina, el Sáhara Occidental o los pueblos kurdos. Todas y cada una de estas crisis sufrieron intervenciones europeas; ahora sufren su abandono.

Señora Mogherini, ¿va a tener Europa algún papel en Oriente Medio o vamos a dejar que estos pueblos sufran y la extrema derecha saque partido de las consecuencias de este desastre? Europa debe enterrar las intervenciones militares, ser un actor independiente, estabilizador, apostar por relaciones de igual a igual. Por justicia con quienes se manifiestan en las calles de los países que hemos destrozado, y por el propio destino de nuestro continente.

 
  
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  François-Xavier Bellamy (PPE). – Monsieur le Président, Madame Mogherini, vous l’avez dit, cette région dont nous parlons ce soir, le Moyen-Orient, est en proie à de graves tensions. Dans cette situation, les Européens que nous sommes doivent avoir trois objectifs majeurs.

Premièrement, il faut aider ces pays dans leur quête de démocratie, en tous les cas, dans leur volonté d’aller vers un état de droit plus solide. Je pense en particulier, en tant qu’élu français, à nos amis du Liban qui peuvent et doivent bénéficier de notre soutien dans cette transition.

Deuxièmement, il y a lieu de garantir – tel est notre rôle historique – la protection des minorités. Je pense en particulier aux minorités chrétiennes, dont nous devons être les protecteurs dans cette région, mais aussi, par exemple, aux yézidis et à tous ceux qui pourraient être touchés par des violences. Garantir la paix et le respect des droits de chaque être humain dans cette région, quelle que soit sa confession, devrait être une priorité de notre diplomatie.

Enfin, troisièmement – comme le rappelait mon collègue à l’instant –, il importe de veiller à ce que ces évolutions ne soient pas captées par ce qui est aujourd’hui notre ennemi majeur, non seulement dans cette région, mais sur notre territoire, c’est à dire l’islamisme. Nous le savons très bien et nous l’avons déjà vécu, la manière dont l’Islam radical peut prendre le contrôle de ces territoires, à l’occasion d’une demande de démocratie, doit nous inquiéter. Aujourd’hui, nous devons être vigilants.

Treize militaires français sont morts avant-hier dans la bande sahélo-saharienne, au Mali, pour lutter contre cet ennemi. Chers amis, nous avons été très touchés du soutien que vous avez témoigné à la France dans ce moment de deuil, mais ce soutien doit aussi être concret aujourd’hui. Notre pays ne peut pas porter tout seul ce combat. Nous devons unir nos forces dans cet engagement, unir nos forces militaires, bien sûr. Nous n’aurons pas une diplomatie forte et efficace si nous n’avons pas, en même temps et collectivement, les moyens de notre action. Grâce au Fonds européen de défense, par exemple, comme par un engagement plus constant dans cet effort pour la défense de l’Europe, cette dernière peut servir la paix de demain en assumant de développer son autonomie stratégique et de servir une voix libre dans le monde qui se dessine.

 
  
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  Brando Benifei (S&D). – Signor Presidente, onorevoli colleghi, discutiamo di paesi molto diversi ma che oggi condividono un ampio movimento di protesta da parte di migliaia di persone che chiedono una vita dignitosa, un lavoro, inclusione sociale, lotta alla corruzione.

Proteste certamente lontane, anche per caratteristiche, dagli eventi del 2011 ma che non sorprendono, come la relazione del Parlamento che porta il mio nome sulle post-primavere arabe ha paventato, per via del permanere di problemi strutturali.

La fragilità economica e sociale del Libano, per esempio, partner importante dell'Europa, che ha accolto, come sappiamo, ben oltre un milione di rifugiati siriani, oltre il 30 % della popolazione, una situazione che sta portando il paese al collasso. L'Europa non può e non deve lasciare che ciò avvenga e deve sostenere Beirut con ancora maggiore forza per dare risposte alle richieste dei cittadini libanesi.

Devo anche richiamare però l'attenzione sui molti casi di riconsegna di svariati rifugiati nelle mani dell'esercito siriano, casi che ci vengono riportati da varie fonti sul campo, come Amnesty e Operazione Colomba, che costituiscono una grave violazione dell'obbligo di non respingimento, oltre a condannare chi li subisce a morte certa.

In Iraq manteniamo alta l'attenzione sulla popolazione curda, affinché non si prendano a pretesto i disordini per mettere in discussione l'autonomia regionale.

Come italiano devo anche ricordare la tragica morte dei militari, il 10 novembre, rivendicata dal Daesh, e voglio dire che, ribadito il sostegno USA al Kurdistan iracheno, sorprende un po' dopo lo scandaloso disimpegno nei confronti dei curdi siriani.

Oggi come non mai c'è bisogno di un segnale chiaro da parte dell'Europa, forte nella sua azione esterna. Per questo voglio ringraziare, per il lavoro in questo senso fatto in questi anni, Federica Mogherini, che è qua in Aula con noi.

 
  
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  Abir Al-Sahlani (Renew). – Mr President, let me just start by saying that in this House, and under this roof, we have now tried twice to get a resolution about Iraq but have failed and I will ask the political parties here, the Groups, why are you blocking a resolution on Iraq? Talking the talk is one thing, but walking the walk is another.

Addressing the High Representative, Ms Mogherini, now we have a historical choice: either we stand with the Iraqi people or we choose to stand with the government. We know all the governments – they come and go – but the Iraqi people will always be there. What are the concrete measures, Ms Mogherini, that you are going to take to help the Iraqi people to facilitate a dialogue so those protesters who are screaming on Tahrir Square, ‘Norid Waten’ – ‘We want our country’ – their voice is heard.

I want to applaud the Ambassador of the EU in Iraq for his very obvious and strong positions, but we have to make those positions into concrete actions. The UN has lost its credibility and now someone else has to step up and take this responsibility. The only ones that have this credibility is the EU, the only union of democracies in the world.

 
  
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  Bernhard Zimniok (ID). – Herr Präsident, werte Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Ich möchte Euch eindringlich auf ein Sicherheitsproblem hinweisen, welches nicht nur für den Nahen Osten, sondern auch für Europa eine massive Bedrohung darstellt: nämlich die IS-Kämpfer, die in Syrien und im Irak in Haft sind.

Etwa 4 000 Personen aus Europa haben sich damals dem IS angeschlossen. Wir Europäer haben immer noch keine kohärente Strategie entwickelt, wie wir mit diesen Terroristen umgehen wollen und müssen. Das ist eine politische Bankrotterklärung. Der türkische Einmarsch in Nordsyrien hat das Problem nun dringlich gemacht. Eine unbekannte Anzahl an Terroristen konnte bereits fliehen. Das ist ein enormes Sicherheitsproblem, das auf uns zukommt.

Wie gehen wir jetzt um mit diesen Verbrechern, diesen Schlächtern – diesem menschlichen Abschaum –, die brutal gemordet, vergewaltigt und gefoltert haben, die Menschen geköpft haben, gekreuzigt und bei lebendigem Leib verbrannt haben? Gerichtsverfahren in Europa würden in der Regel zu Freisprüchen oder maximal zu geringen Strafen führen, was ein fatales Signal für die unzähligen Opfer dieses Terrorregimes wäre.

Diese Terroristen müssen hart bestraft werden und verdienen keine Gnade. Unterstützen wir deshalb den Irak und Syrien bei der Einrichtung eines Kriegsverbrechertribunals! Europäische Terroristen und IS-Terroristen sind unser aller Feinde: Sie müssen sich dort für ihre Gräueltaten verantworten, wo sie begangen wurden. Nur so kann für Gerechtigkeit für die Opfer gesorgt werden. Wir alle hier sind für die Sicherheit unserer Bürger verantwortlich. Werden wir dieser Verantwortung gerecht!

 
  
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  Beata Kempa (ECR). – Panie Przewodniczący! Droga Pani Komisarz! Chcę bardzo podziękować za wszystko to, co do tej pory zostało zrobione, też za szczyty, które Pani organizowała, gdzie kolejne kraje deklarowały swoją pomoc przede wszystkim dla Syrii, ale też dla krajów, które ponoszą bezpośrednio skutki wojny w Syrii i że cały region jest zdestabilizowany. Ale pozwoli Pani, że uważam, że Unia Europejska powinna w tej chwili mieć jeszcze bardziej skonsolidowany plan działania. W szczególności też – obok dyplomatycznych zabiegów, które są trudne – plan finansowy, bardzo dokładny. Plan, który powinien dotyczyć nie tylko Jordanii, Libanu, ale przede wszystkim w tej chwili również Iraku. Dlatego, że w Iraku poszczególne państwa starają się pomagać, na przykład Węgrzy odbudowali miejscowość Telskuf. To jest bodajże ok. 8 milionów dolarów. Ja myślę, że są kolejne miejscowości, szczególnie w dolinie Niniwy, Baszika, Bartella, Batnaja, gdzie, jeśli ci ludzie mieliby gdzie wrócić z obozów, wróciliby natychmiast. Myślę, że destabilizacja musiałaby ustąpić, i przede wszystkim też musimy myśleć o tym, aby te konkretne projekty pokazały w hołdzie ojcom założycielom, że robimy tam bardzo konkretne rzeczy.

 
  
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  Domènec Ruiz Devesa (S&D). – Señor presidente, señorías, gracias, señora vicepresidenta y alta representante, por su trabajo y también por la declaración que ha hecho hoy, que yo apoyo. Si vemos lo que está sucediendo en el mundo árabe islámico —vemos la situación en Argelia, la situación en el Líbano, la situación en Irak, la situación en Irán—, uno estaría tentado de pensar que nos encontramos ante una suerte de segunda primavera árabe islámica.

Si en Argelia hay un cambio de régimen, en el Líbano y en Irak hay un cambio de gobierno, y en Irán hay grandes protestas que han sido reprimidas de una manera totalmente inaceptable. Yo creo que lo que ha dicho nuestra colega de Renew es cierto. Este Parlamento debe posicionarse sobre la situación en Irak con una resolución, y nuestro futuro alto representante, el señor Borrell, tiene que tomarse con mucha seriedad la situación de estos tres países, y debemos tener una aproximación estratégica a toda la situación.

 
  
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  Ilhan Kyuchyuk (Renew). – Mr President, today the Middle East is in the spotlight, but in reality we have never stopped thinking about that region in recent years. Unfortunately, it continues to be a cradle of poverty, suffering, wars and ethno—religious conflicts – without a clear direction for development and hope for millions of citizens, but spreading terrorism and extremism that has led to hundreds of thousands of innocent victims, with deadly demonstrations and violence in Iraq, Iran, Lebanon and a refusal of politicians to accept reality and give hope for the future.

These are not movie scenes but a painful reality. Not by coincidence, one Iraqi newspaper asked the question: if you kill us all, whom do you rule over? Europe cannot stay silent. I urge the authorities of these countries to stop the violence against peaceful protesters immediately, and to open the door to dialogue. Parliamentarians must act by reflecting the public interest for a new and different way of conducting politics, restoring hope and bringing a brighter future.

 
  
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  Thierry Mariani (ID). – Monsieur le Président, Madame la Haute représentante, nous devons écouter et comprendre la colère du peuple libanais, mais nous devons veiller à ce que toutes les évolutions au Liban préservent la diversité religieuse et, notamment, la place de la communauté chrétienne, qui, comme vous le savez, est particulièrement menacée dans cette région.

En tant qu’élus européens, nous devons cependant nous poser la question suivante: que deviennent les millions qui sont versées au Liban pour lui venir en aide? Je vous remettrai une lettre d’un élu du Liban, de la région de Tripoli, qui nous apprend que l’Union européenne a financé une station de traitement des déchets qui n’a jamais fonctionné. Pourquoi les donneurs ne contrôlent-ils pas? Pourquoi cet argent n’est-il jamais arrivé au destinataire? Enfin, pourquoi l’Europe ne fait-elle rien pour s’assurer, justement, que l’argent ne part pas dans les canaux de la corruption?

À mon avis, le service que nous pourrions rendre aux Libanais serait de faire en sorte que l’argent que les Européens leur donnent pour les aider profite réellement au peuple et ne se perde pas dans la corruption.

 
  
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  Jan Zahradil (ECR). – Mr President, in the previous debate I said Israel is our main regional strategic partner. Now I have to say that, particularly, Iran is our main regional strategic rival, the main anti-Western Force there. What we have seen over many years has been an endless attempt by Iran to achieve regional hegemony. The Iranian fundamentalist theocracy has been spreading its influence over Iraq, Syria and, of course, Lebanon, undermining constantly their internal coherence, and it is time to stop this.

It’s time to change our appeasement policy vis-à-vis Iran. it is time to support the exiled opposition. If we want to pursue our own EU interests in the region, we are obliged to do that. To curb Iran, I believe, is the key to stability in the region.

 
  
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  Jytte Guteland (S&D). – Herr talman! Höga representanten Mogherini! Enligt vittnesmål från internationella organisationer använder iranska styrkor övervåld mot dem som protesterar mot orättvisorna i landet. Hundratals demonstranter har dödats, tusentals har skadats eller fängslats. Det är oacceptabelt att människor som protesterar för sina sociala och ekonomiska rättigheter dödas, skadas, fängslas eller bemöts med brutalitet från regimen.

Därutöver är nedsläckningen av internet djupt kränkande och ett brott mot mänskliga rättigheter. Det är också djupt osympatiskt att man samtidigt hör om presidenten, som twittrar, medan människors liv beskärs på grund av att man inte får tillgång till det som vi finner alldeles naturligt. Internet måste omedelbart öppnas.

Jag, liksom många av mina kolleger, fördömer det som händer i Iran och vill se ett resolut agerande och en tydlighet från EU. Jag vill passa på att tacka dig, Federica Mogherini, för ditt viktiga arbete under dessa år. Jag har följt dig och sett väldigt mycket av ditt arbete som beundransvärt. Jag vill se att du nu tydligt gör en sista markering mot Iran för att hjälpa de människor som nu drabbas.

 
  
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  Martin Horwood (Renew). – Mr President, as Vice—Chair of this Parliament’s Iran delegation, I’m going to focus on that country, and I speak as a supporter of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, an outspoken critic of illegal US sanctions and one who would encourage, rather than undermine, moderates within the Iranian regime.

But all these positions become harder and harder with each infringement of international norms by Iran. The current civilian protests have been met with wholly disproportionate force, and we in Europe must condemn without reservation the killing of at least 100 civilian protesters and the arrest of, perhaps, 1 000 more. I remain a supporter of dialogue, so I very much welcome the announcement of a new joint commission, but we must robustly condemn atrocities when they take place.

Can I finish by thanking Ms Mogherini for her impressive, respectful and, above all, patient attendance at this Parliament and for all her hard work on behalf of all of us, including the United Kingdom? I do hope her successor can do likewise and won’t have to deal with us as a foreign country.

 
  
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  Silvia Sardone (ID). – Signor Presidente, onorevoli colleghi, violente proteste di piazza hanno sconvolto l'Iran in queste settimane. Che cosa ha fatto l'Unione europea? Nulla. Abbiamo qua l'Alto rappresentante dell'Unione europea per gli affari esteri Mogherini. Che cosa ha fatto lei? Nulla.

L'Europa in questi anni ha perdonato all'Iran l'imperdonabile: le torture, processi sommari, le minacce all'Occidente, persino il finanziamento al terrorismo. Ha fatto finta che non esistessero le impiccagioni. Tra i condannati ci sono state 90 donne, impiccate solo nel 2019. Dove sono finite le femministe e i movimenti #metoo?

L'Europa, invece di proporre modernità e libertà, ha deciso, in nome del petrolio e degli affari, di dialogare di fatto con l'ayatollah. Allora io chiedo, semplicemente: in considerazione dei morti, dei feriti, di internet censurato, e del fatto che i cittadini lì vogliono la fine della Repubblica islamica, quando l'Europa ne prenderà atto e sosterrà finalmente la libertà e la democrazia?

 
  
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  Javi López (S&D). – Señor presidente, señora alta representante, hoy nos encontramos aquí para hablar sobre la situación de Oriente Medio y especialmente de las graves protestas que han ocurrido, por razones diferentes, en varios países: en el Líbano, en Irak o en Irán.

Queremos explicar algunos patrones comunes sobre lo que está pasando hoy en Oriente Medio. Un enorme descontento social por la falta de oportunidades, acceso a servicios públicos, acceso a un crecimiento económico que llegue al conjunto de la población, lamentablemente, conflictos que durante los últimos años han padecido las poblaciones de Oriente Medio, una polarización regional. Y no solo eso, sino instituciones poco inclusivas para, además, países normalmente multiétnicos.

Nosotros lo que reclamamos —y lo que la Unión Europea también ha intentado durante los últimos años— es: uno, apoyar las piezas que la comunidad internacional pone para estabilizar la zona; el acuerdo nuclear con Irán es un ejemplo; dos, pedir a Irak que se pidan responsabilidades a aquellos que han estado reprimiendo las protestas y provocado muertos en las calles; y tres, en el caso del Líbano, por favor, apoyar a un país que está acogiendo a muchos refugiados, y que tiene problemas financieros y económicos muy graves.

 
  
  

PRZEWODNICTWO: EWA KOPACZ
Wiceprzewodnicząca

 
  
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  María Soraya Rodríguez Ramos (Renew). – Señora presidenta. Señora Mogherini, muchas gracias por su trabajo, esfuerzo y dedicación durante estos años. Las protestas que recorren la región son protestas en las que la ciudadanía pide más libertad, más democracia, más derechos sociales.

En Irán estas revueltas han sido reprimidas con una enorme dureza, con la utilización de armas de fuego contra la población civil. Amnistía Internacional nos indica que hay decenas, centenares de muertos, cuatro mil heridos, diez mil detenidos, aunque en el país se ha efectuado un cierre de información, un cierre digital.

De nuevo, las autoridades han puesto también la presión sobre las mujeres. Les están colocando un círculo rojo diciendo que son responsables y agitadoras de estos disturbios.

Pedimos, por lo tanto, a la Comisión y a la comunidad internacional que condene claramente estos hechos, que pida a las autoridades iraníes que cese la represión y que se haga un llamamiento claro al diálogo político y democrático.

 
  
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  Lars Patrick Berg (ID). – Frau Präsidentin, Hohe Vertreterin! Ich beschränke mich in meinen Ausführungen auf die Situation im Libanon.

Wir konnten alle mitverfolgen, wie sich die aktuelle Krise durch den Rücktritt der libanesischen Regierung angesichts öffentlicher Proteste und der Unfähigkeit der politischen Führer, eine neue Regierung zu bilden, entwickelt hat. Hinter allem steht die Hisbollah, eine als terroristisch eingestufte Organisation, und hinter der Hisbollah steht als Geldgeber die iranische Regierung.

Der Libanon leidet seit langem unter der Einmischung von außen und ist zu einem Schlachtfeld für konkurrierende Interessengruppen geworden. Die Hisbollah fungiert hierbei als Stellvertreter des Iran und destabilisiert durch ihren Terror die ohnehin fragilen Institutionen im Libanon weiter. Die Hisbollah und die Amal-Bewegung greifen regierungskritische Demonstranten in Beirut an und versuchen so sicherzustellen, dass der Einfluss des Iran weiterhin aufrechterhalten wird.

Israel hat erklärt, dass es weitere Angriffe der Hisbollah auf sein Staatsgebiet nicht tolerieren wird. Die Hisbollah handelt auf Veranlassung des Iran. Es muss unser Interesse sein, dass dies nicht weiter geschieht. Wir können nicht zulassen, dass der Libanon wieder einmal zu einem Schlachtfeld wird.

 
  
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  Andreas Schieder (S&D). – Frau Präsidentin, sehr geehrte Frau Hohe Vertreterin! Ich möchte Ihnen zu Beginn besonders für die vielen Initiativen und für Ihre erfolgreiche Arbeit danken, auch gerade was den Versuch betrifft, ein Abkommen mit dem Iran zu erreichen.

Aber wir haben in den letzten Tagen erschütternde Bilder aus dem Iran erhalten: Demonstrationen und Unruhen, weil die wirtschaftliche, die soziale und die politisch-demokratische Lage für die Bevölkerung unerträglich geworden ist. Die brutale Reaktion des iranischen Regimes – hunderte Tote, tausende Inhaftierte – zeigt doch, wie unmenschlich dieses Regime agiert.

Die iranische Regierung muss die Menschenrechte, die Meinungsfreiheit, die Redefreiheit, die Versammlungsfreiheit, die Demonstrationsfreiheit, die Informationsfreiheit und auch das freie Internet respektieren. Es braucht aber auch Deeskalation, und es braucht auch außenpolitisch ein Zurück an den Verhandlungstisch. Die Krise gehört entschärft, und es darf nicht weiteres Öl ins Feuer gegossen werden, wie das zum Beispiel der amerikanische Präsident macht.

 
  
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  Елена Йончева (S&D). – Г-жо Председател, изразявам безпокойството си от възникналото напрежение от ситуацията в Близкоизточния регион. Идвайки от България – една от първите гранични държави на Европейския съюз по пътя на бежанските потоци, бих искала да обърна внимание на Европейския парламент, че ескалацията на напрежението създава реална заплаха от нова бежанска вълна към Европа.

Виждам опасност в намеренията на турската държава да разсели над 2 млн. арабски бежанци в кюрдските райони на северна Сирия, където в момента се провежда операция на турската армия. Считам, че подобно заселване трябва да бъде осъществено само по свободната воля на бежанците. То не трябва да бъде за сметка на коренното кюрдско население.

Една промяна на етническата карта в региона, особено при неустановения мир в Сирия, крие голям риск за нова и дълготрайна бежанска вълна, този път от кюрдските бежанци към страните – членки на Европейския съюз. Затова призовавам Европейският парламент да предложи международен механизъм за мониторинг за прозрачност и контрол на процеса.

 
  
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  Eero Heinäluoma (S&D). – Arvoisa puhemies, on todellakin hyvin surullista nähdä joka ikinen päivä, mitä tapahtuu tällä hetkellä Lähi-idässä. Syyriassa kuolee edelleen ihmisiä. Iranissa loukataan vakavasti ihmisoikeuksia, ja myös Irakissa on uudelleen huomattavia ongelmia ihmisoikeuksien noudattamisessa. Mielenosoittajien demokraattisia oikeuksia kavennetaan, ja toisinajattelijoita kohtaan käytetään väkivaltaa. Kaiken tämän olemme nähneet sen jälkeen, kun Yhdysvaltain johdolla tunkeuduttiin Irakiin ja se osaltaan vaikutti suureen epävakauteen koko alueella ja käynnisti väkivaltakierteen, jota ei ole vieläkään saatu poikki. Euroopan unionin pitää olla selkeä mielipiteissään ja tukea ihmisoikeuksia ja demokratian vahvistamista. Mutta kärsivällisyyttä tämä vaatii. Pikavoittoja ei ole tiedossa.

 
  
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  Tudor Ciuhodaru (S&D). – Doamna președintă, Teheran, Beirut și Bagdad sunt trei puncte dureroase pe harta lumii în acest moment și, în loc de pâine și democrație, oamenii primesc gloanțe și violență. Sunt întristat de faptul că sunt colegi de-ai mei, medici, care mor în acest moment în timp ce își apără pacienții. Dar mă întreb oare noi, Parlamentul European, am făcut suficiente lucruri până acum? Și este nevoie de un mecanism internațional de intervenție, de transparență și de protecție a celor care suferă în acest moment. Iar, doamnă înalt-comisar, am o întrebare: ce măsuri lăsați moștenire viitoarei comisii pentru ca astfel de lucruri să nu se mai repete și, dacă este posibil, să-mi spuneți dacă există un anumit termen pentru ca acestea să fie implementate.

 
  
 

Zgłoszenia z sali

 
  
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  Jiří Pospíšil (PPE). – Paní předsedající, já chci nejprve na úvod poděkovat paní Mogheriniové za její práci po celé období. Mnohokrát jsme zde debatovali i o situaci na Blízkém východě a přiznám se, že v tomto tématu jsme se úplně neshodli.

Já se domnívám, že naše politika vůči íránskému režimu byla příliš pozitivní, příliš idealistická a teď se ukazuje, že bude na nové Komisi, aby zhodnotila, nakolik máme v této oblasti přitvrdit. Požadavky obyvatel Blízkého východu jsou zcela legitimní, sociální podmínky jsou otřesné, obrovská korupce, v každém státě trochu odlišný režim, ale já jsem přesvědčen, že největší problém je v íránském režimu. Bude třeba, aby nová Komise přehodnotila, zda vůči íránskému režimu nemáme postupovat trochu tvrději a zda nemáme dát jednoznačně najevo, že íránský režim je dnes bohužel zdrojem destabilizace Blízkého východu a zdrojem potlačování lidských práv. Na druhou stranu musíme dělat vše pro to, aby tuto šanci nevyužili islamisté a v této lokalitě dále neposilovali.

 
  
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  Juan Fernando López Aguilar (S&D). – Señora presidenta, vicepresidenta Mogherini, en esta jornada en que hemos votado ampliamente a la Comisión Von der Leyen, me sumo al reconocimiento de su trabajo durante estos cinco años —que ha sido muy duro— y de su constancia en este Parlamento Europeo a estas altas horas, debatiendo la situación en tres países de Oriente Medio con muy poco en común entre sí, salvo la inestabilidad y las protestas.

El Líbano debe mucho su inestabilidad a la intrusión iraní en los últimos años. Y entre Irak e Irán hubo una guerra muy sangrienta. La situación más preocupante de lejos es la de Irán, exactamente porque es la que dura más tiempo; porque es la que más se ha encarnizado represivamente contra las mujeres; porque es la que arroja un balance mayor de penas de muerte ejecutadas; y porque en las últimas protestas arroja un balance de mortandad también inaceptable: cerca de un centenar de muertes, entre ellas la de Nikta Esfandani, apenas una niña de catorce años.

Según reportan todas las organizaciones internacionales, el uso de la fuerza no solamente es desproporcionado sino sistemático, para reprimir brutalmente toda disidencia, y eso es sencillamente inaceptable. Apoyamos el acuerdo nuclear, pero no podemos callar ante esta brutalidad sistemática del régimen iraní.

 
  
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  Anthea McIntyre (ECR). – Madam President, we really just can’t stand by and ignore what is happening in Iran. Both the EU and the international community has got to absolutely denounce the intentional lethal use of force by the Revolutionary Guards, the Iranian police and the plainclothes agents of the Iranian regime. The deaths of some 143 people have been carefully documented by Amnesty International, but they believe that the death toll is significantly higher. Most of those who have been killed have been shot – like Nikta Esfandiari. She was 14 years old. She was shot in the head. Her family searched for her for three days before they were given her body by the officials of the regime.

Our response so far has been woefully inadequate. We have got to demand that the leaders of the regime face justice for their crimes. There must be no joint commission with Iran while the Iranian regime is perpetrating crimes against humanity.

 
  
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  Clare Daly (GUE/NGL). – Madam President, I was actually very glad to hear Ms Mogherini talk about Europe’s continued opposition to the unilateral withdrawal of the US from the Iranian nuclear deal and the efforts to attempt to salvage that programme. But I think we have to go further and we have to acknowledge that the imposition of sanctions to coerce Iran has caused immense hardship on Iranian citizens and the poor and the vulnerable in particular – the very people that we are protesting that we need to defend.

We now have the spectacle of the US attempting to exploit the legitimate and authentic protests in Iraq and Lebanon in order to target Iran. I think we should be very careful not to fall for that trap. Mike Pompeo says the protests are caused by Iranian corruption. These are real people, with real problems: corruption, under—development, a wrecked economy. The Iraqis are still dealing with the after—effects of the Iraq war. We should not allow ourselves to fall into the trap of US manipulation. We must work for stability in Iran and Iraq and Lebanon, and peace in Syria and Yemen and oppose the US—Saudi attempts to isolate Iran.

 
  
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  Mick Wallace (GUE/NGL). – Madam President, I too found Ms Mogherini’s contribution on Iran more balanced than a lot of the others I heard in here tonight. But the particulars and differences of the unfolding events in Iran, Iraq and Lebanon are huge.

That being said, there is something that these countries have in common. They’ve all suffered from relentless foreign interference in their affairs, regime change, wars, civil wars, long-standing economic sanctions, and the pillage of natural and public resources by politicians, bankers, billionaires and global corporations.

There are people dying in these different countries. Any killing of peaceful protesters by Iranian police has to be condemned by us. Obviously, it doesn’t help matters that some foreign entities are funding opposition groups inside Iran in order to destabilise the government.

We should also condemn any deaths of protesters in Iraq and Lebanon. Likewise, we should condemn the death of protesters in Bolivia and Iran. Let’s keep it even.

 
  
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  Matthew Patten (NI). – Madam President, I deplore the recent deaths and human rights violations in Iran and the continued imprisonment of political prisoners like Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, who should be freed immediately.

But the number-one policy aim in Iran is to stop it building a nuclear weapon, but it is now restarting uranium enrichment. While I support the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear agreement, I think we have to brace ourselves for its failure and urgently look for a plan B.

The EU is not blameless for this mess. The Instrument for Supporting Trade Exchange (INSTEX), its plan to circumvent US sanctions, has come up short. As a result, Iran is now threatening reprisals against the EU and its Member States. It must be right that a coalition of Member States and other global players is part of that solution, but only the active involvement of the US will help.

Many people in this Parliament deny President Trump, but if we want to keep the Middle East nuclear-free, resume trade and support the human rights of Iranians, we urgently need to restore friendships and influence in Washington, not Tehran. I’m certain that Britain’s special relationship with the US can help.

 
  
 

(Koniec zgłoszeń z sali)

 
  
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  Federica Mogherini, Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy. – Madam President, I have seen that the majority of interventions tonight on this topic confirm and encourage the approach that I described at the beginning of this debate. Thank you for that.

Let me just answer specifically one question that was asked, even if I don’t see the Member of Parliament present in the room – but I am sure that she will be watching us carefully from her office. She was inviting the European Union to finance some concrete projects in the Middle East and she mentioned, in particular, the case of Iraq.

Just as an example, to name the numbers, just for Iraq specifically, we have been financing concrete projects and that means demining, that means job creation, that means reconciliation – projects that exist and that we visit constantly, at my level, at the level of our delegation on the ground. I’m sure some of you have visited as well some of these projects we finance in the Middle East. Just for Iraq in the last years: EUR 1.25 billion of concrete projects just for Iraq. That is to say that this is not just diplomacy – even though diplomacy in this particular time of global politics is a valuable element, and sometimes I believe we underestimate the power of our diplomatic engagement.

But it’s not just diplomacy. It’s also about supporting very concretely the projects that help people on a daily basis. Many of you have said it’s real people, it’s real people with real needs. It’s children, women and men that have faced difficulties not just for years, but sometimes for decades, and that live under very difficult situations in security terms, in economic terms.

The European Union and the European institutions are also financing those concrete projects that are literally life—saving projects for millions of people. I would have expected that members of the European Parliament would know this. So if I can invite you to document yourself, at least on the projects you agree on financing in these areas, I think this would be a service to the way in which you can represent your constituencies.

Having said that, let me say clearly that obviously I cannot state – and it would not be appropriate for me to indicate – what the position of the next Commission and the next High Representative will be on this. It is obviously for them to shape it, together with the Council, but let me say that I hope and I believe that the European Union, with your support, will have to be – even more so in the future – a fundamental partner for the people of the region, because sometimes we don’t realise how important the role we play is.

Whenever you visit you hear from your interlocutors, and not only the governments or institutions, but the people, civil society and simple citizens that are the key of democracy, that they count on us. Sometimes I have the impression that they recognise our role much more than Europeans do.

So I think that the road ahead will have to be investing even more in economic and diplomatic but also security terms, in supporting this region in finding its way to a sustainable peace and sustainable security. And obviously, as many all of you have said, and as I’ve said in the beginning, with the firmest rejection of any form of violence and disproportionate reaction and handling of the protests from the authorities. This is clearly unacceptable. And this is exactly why, for instance in Iraq, we are engaged in the security sector reform system, because we see the need for a reform – otherwise we wouldn’t be engaging in that respect. We see the need to change and improve the way in which the institutions can handle the security situations of the country, and many other situations.

So again, I hope I that this Parliament will give all its support to an even further engagement and work of the European Union institutions in the Middle East.

 
  
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  Przewodnicząca. – Zamykam debatę.

 
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