“Unfortunately, when anti-Israeli statements come from leaders of European Union countries, it only keeps cooperation and ties further away,” Edelstein told Giaufret.
By: United with Israel Staff
Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein met on Tuesday with European Union (EU) Ambassador to Israel Emanuele Giaufret, explaining that he had heard “horrible remarks about Israel” during his visit to France in May.
“I tried to think what could be done to connect the two countries but, unfortunately, when these anti-Israeli statements come from leaders of European Union countries, it only keeps cooperation and ties further away,” Edelstein told Giaufret.
In this regard, Edelstein mentioned what he called the “exaggerated response” to the US’ transfer of its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Israel’s capital, and the “unfounded” link made between the embassy’s relocation and the spike in Palestinian terror attacks emanating from Gaza.
“The Europeans have important and liberal principles and values. Israel is the only country in the Middle East which shares these values,” he said. “The EU can serve as a key player in the effort to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, but it becomes irrelevant when it takes only one position.”
Several European leaders have claimed that the riots on Israel’s border with Gaza were a response to the embassy move, while completely disregarding the fact that these events were led by the Hamas terror organization and carried out by its operatives, while Hamas itself admitted that most of those killed were their men.
Europe Must See the Bigger Picture
Addressing the nuclear agreement with Iran, Edelstein said “It is obvious to everyone that Iran must not be allowed to develop nuclear weapons.”
European countries “think the deal is good, but forget that it does not include the Al-Quds Force just beyond the border with Israel.”
Edelstein said that the Europeans must look at the larger picture. “You must look at what is happening today and understand the developments in the region,” Edelstein said.
He was referring to Iran’s attempt to build military bases in Syria and establish a new front on Israel’s northern border, led by Iran’s Quds forces.
Israel has long been concerned about the Iranian military buildup in Syria and views it as a severe threat to its security that needs to be addressed in a revised nuclear agreement with Tehran.
After the Meeting, Giaufret thanked Edelstein on Twitter for “a comprehensive discussion” on Israel-EU relations, “the common fight against anti-Semitism, democracy and rule of law, [the] regional situation, [and] Israeli-Palestinian issues.”
“Relations are important and we need to nurture them through dialogue,” he added.
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