Coils of barbed wire from an unfinished section of the Israeli separation barrier lie on a hillside near Cremisan monastery in Beit Jala, West Bank, February 15, 2013.

EU Heads of Mission visit Bethlehem, condemn wall and settlements


European Union Heads of Mission in Jerusalem and Ramallah visited Bethlehem, Al Nahle and the Cremisan Valley on 26 May 2016. They held meetings with the Governor and the Mayor, members of local civil society organisations, and representatives from the business community. The visit came to gain a first-hand impression of developments in the governorate and particularly in the Cremisan valley.

The interlocutors presented the Heads of Mission with an overview of the political, social and economic challenges facing Bethlehem governorate. The Heads of Mission made field visits to An-Nahle and Bir Ona in the Cremisan Valley. They were briefed on the impact of settlements’ expansion and the Separation Barrier surrounding Bethlehem.

“I recall here the EU Council Conclusions of January 2016 in which the EU Foreign Ministers voiced EU strong opposition of Israel’s settlement policy and actions taken in this context, such as building the separation barrier beyond the 1967 line. Settlements are illegal under international law, constitute an obstacle to peace and threaten to make a two state solution impossible,” said the EU Representative Ralph Tarraf.

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