The European Union Labels Itself Biased
Any reaction to the
EU policy of labeling products manufactured in Israeli settlements should
consider the following points:
policy requiring member states to label products made in Israeli settlements is
intended to harm Israel and Israel only, as a distinct political action and as a
means of pressuring Israel politically.
This measure has no
substantive connection with whether settlement products meet EU and individual
state sanitary, health, hygienic, production, packaging, cleanliness, or other
quality standards. It is a purely selective, discriminatory, and political
The EU labeling
policy is based on a unilateral EU premise that Israelís settlements are
contrary to international law. This premise runs counter to other relevant legal
opinions as to the legitimacy of Israelís settlement policy in accordance with
the accepted international norms regarding the administration of territory.
Additionally, and more importantly, the issue of Israelís settlements is an
agreed negotiating issue between Israel and the PLO, pursuant to the Oslo
Accords. Thus, the EU labeling directive is tantamount to interference in, and
prejudgment of an agreed negotiating issue between Israel and the Palestinians.
The EU labeling
requirement is an overt, political measure strengthening the already existing
links between the EU and the predominantly European BDS campaign. It represents
full identification of the EU and its member states with the aims of the BDS
movement to undermine Israel and to weaken the relations between European
countries and Israel.
The selective and
discriminatory EU labeling policy directed solely against Israel blatantly
ignores the numerous situations in the world where states administering
territories have transferred hundreds and thousands of their own citizens into
the territories they are administering, such as Turkey in Northern Cyprus,
Morocco in the occupied territory of Western Sahara, Russia in occupied
Ukrainian territory, and the like. This is indicative of an acute double
standard in EU policies, raising pertinent questions regarding the real
motivation behind such policy.
This selective and
discriminatory EU labeling policy is both immoral and hypocritical, driven by
manipulation and political pressure by those within the EU who have consistently
acted to push member states to interfere in the Middle East dispute and take
biased and unilateral positions intended to undermine the integrity of the peace
negotiations in a manner directed at harming Israel. The EU labeling policy, in
effect, cancels any bona fide European pretension to
participate in the peace negotiation process between Israel and the
Palestinians. Cooperating with the EU labeling directive means that the EU has
taken sides and has prejudged one of the central negotiating issues Ė that of
settlements Ė which is still an open issue on the Israeli-Palestinian
EU member states that
support and implement the discriminatory labeling policy will, in fact, by
taking such a biased and discriminatory position, remove themselves from any
cycle of involvement in the peace process, and will, in effect, be sabotaging
the process and damaging the integrity and bona fides of the
The EU policy
undermines the EU status as one of the signatories to the Oslo Accords, together
with the leaders of the United States, Russia, Norway, Egypt, and Jordan; the UN
also endorsed the Accords. It also undermines the status of the EU as a member
of the Middle East Quartet, together with the UN, Russia, and the United States.
Self-respecting European states that genuinely believe in the importance of
advancing the Israel-Palestinian peace negotiation process cannot identify with
or implement such an EU discriminatory measure intended to harm Israel.
Even-handed and fair-minded states will not allow themselves to be manipulated
by politically-driven elements within the EU seeking to weaken Israel, the
integrity of the peace process, and their own interests.