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Parliamentary questions
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21 September 2015
E-012963-15
Question for written answer E-012963-15
to the Commission (Vice-President/High Representative)
Rule 130
Zdzisław Krasnodębski (ECR)

 Subject:  VP/HR — Palestinian NGOs' Code of Conduct and EU engagement in the Middle East peace process
 Answer in writing 

In 2008, Palestinian organisations drafted the Palestinian NGOs' Code of Conduct. This document is in contradiction with the vision of the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP), i.e. to foster peace and regional cooperation, particularly insofar as it obliges signatory NGOs to ‘be in line with the national agenda without any normalisation activities with the occupier [Israel], neither at the political-security nor the cultural or developmental levels’.

The NGO Development Centre (NDC), which facilitated the Code of Conduct, as well as many other organisations that have become parties to the code and otherwise actively promote the Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign, are funded by and/or partner with various EU mechanisms. Meanwhile, an EU evaluation of July 2014 stated that ‘cooperation with Israeli civil society partners (including participation in regional programmes) is limited by increasing pressure from the anti-normalisation movement’.

1. Is the VP/HR aware of this Code of Conduct being in use by Palestinian NGOs, and what is her assessment of it?

2. Does the VP/HR consider actors that ideologically promote anti-normalisation to be suitable ENP partners? Does the VP/HR share the view that by strengthening these NGOs the EU is thwarting its own role as champion of peace and is helping hostile views expand within the Palestinian community?

3. Should the ENP develop tools to better define positive civil society engagement?

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