- Published on Tuesday, 15 May 2012 09:42
International humanitarian agency Oxfam welcomes the unprecedented stance taken by EU Foreign Ministers, meeting in Brussels on Monday, 14 May, which strongly criticizes Israeli government policies towards 'Area C' of the occupied West Bank.
Demolition of Palestinian infrastructure by Israeli authorities, including EU-funded aid projects, such as water cisterns and animal shelters, has been on the rise[i], hindering Palestinian development and increasing the risk of displacement for already vulnerable communities.
Tidhar Wald, Oxfam's EU humanitarian policy advisor, said:
"Europe has issued on Monday a comprehensive rejection of successive Israeli government policies towards the occupied West Bank. As a humanitarian and development organisation present in the Occupied Palestinian Territory for over 50 years, Oxfam witnesses daily the impact that Israeli settlement expansion, building restrictions and demolitions have on the Palestinian communities we work with. Today's criticism is a first step towards helping these communities claim their basic rights and can go a long way towards promoting the economic and social development that Palestinians desperately need."
"We strongly welcome the EU Ministers' bold stance, and the leadership shown by EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, as it demonstrates Europe's continued commitment to working towards a just and durable solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. EU governments must now match words with action to make today's recommendations a reality on the ground for the benefits of those most in need."