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Parliamentary questions
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28 January 2021
E-000553/2021
Question for written answer  E-000553/2021
to the Council
Rule 138
Lukas Mandl (PPE)
 Answer in writing 
 Subject: Re-establishment of the EU-Israel Association Council

Israel is the EU’s most important ally and the only true democracy in the Middle East. Therefore, close cooperation in the areas of the economy and security is of mutual interest. Despite this, the Association Agreement with Israel that forms the basis of the relationship has not been modernised since 1995. In addition, the EU-Israel Association Council has not held a formal meeting since 2012. Commissioner Oliver Varhelyi tweeted on 17 September 2020 that an Association Council meeting should be organised soon(1). The Portuguese Foreign Minister Augusto Santos Silva also expressed openness to relaunching the bilateral ties during the Portuguese Council Presidency(2). In the light of these developments:

1. What is the time frame for re-establishing the Association Council with Israel?

2. Which Member States are blocking/have blocked the organisation of the Association Council?

3. Does the Council intend to adopt a mandate for the opening of negotiations with Israel on the modernisation of the outdated Association Agreement?

(1)https://twitter.com/OliverVarhelyi/status/1306596558683529217
(2)https://www.euractiv.com/section/eu-priorities-2020/news/portugal-should-bolster-eu-israel-links-envoy-says/
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