Activists in Europe urged to lobby MEPs to vote against new EU-Israel trade protocol

The European Coordination of Committees and Associations for Palestine (ECCP), a network of solidarity groups and NGOs, is calling on supporters of Palestinian rights to lobby their MEPs to vote against a new EU-Israel trade protocol. 

If the agreement is approved by a plenary session of the European Parliament on 23 October, the Agreement on Conformity Assessment and Acceptance of Industrial Products (ACAA) would remove barriers to trade in pharmaceutical and industrial products between the EU and Israel and send Israel a clear message that the EU is willing to criticize Israeli crimes but not to take meaningful action against them.

EU officials have also failed to draft the protocol in a way that would prevent it from providing assistance or recognition to Israel’s illegal settlements

The ECCP has set up an online tool that allows campaigners to send a pre-drafted message to all of their MEPs in just a few clicks. Translated versions have been created for Spain, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Ireland and Belgium (in French and Dutch). Other translations are being worked on and in the meantime campaigners from other countries can send a message in English

In the UK, over 5,500 messages have been sent by the online tool set up by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign.  

Please take a couple of minutes to send a message to MEPs and spread the tool through your networks. Activists based outside the EU can still contribute by passing on the link to the tool to their friends and contacts who live in EU countries. It’s rare that the whole of the European Parliament gets an opportunity to vote on EU-Israel relations - this is a great opportunity to show the level of public anger at the EU’s continued support for Israeli apartheid. 

A proposal to delay the implementation of the protocol was defeated in the European Parliament’s trade committee last month by just two votes. NGOs across Europe had lobbied the committee members and thousands of signatures were gathered in support of the proposal. That the proposal was so narrowly defeated is testament the pressure that MEPs have been put under by solidarity campaigners and indicates that the 23 October vote by all MEPs is also likely to be close.




The European Parliament is urged to vote against the EU-Israel Agreement (ACAA)

The European Parliament is urged to vote against the EU-Israel Agreement on Conformity, Assessment and Acceptance (ACAA), next week in Strasbourg.

1. The Israeli state by continuing with its illegal settlement program in the occupied territories of the West Bank and East Jerusalem in clear contempt of the ruling of the International Court of Justice and against the authority of the United Nations and the demands of the UK and the other EU member states, is intending to frustrate the establishment of a Palestinian state.

2. Furthermore, Israel is already in gross breach of its specific obligations under Article 2 of the existing EU-Israel Association Agreement in regard to Human & Civil Rights.

3. The reason that the Israeli government is able to continue to flout international law and continue with its illegal colonization is the huge profits that it already makes from its bilateral trade with the EU that is currently worth in the region of 30 billion euros. Without this trade, the Israeli government would be forced to comply with international law.

4. There are compelling reasons for peace in the Middle East and the continued allowance of Israel to trade with Europe goes against these principles and will soon lead to a new conflict that could very easily see Israel deploying its undeclared nuclear warheads against its neighbors in a war that would threaten not only the Middle East but also Europe and the world.

5. The European Union should act from strength and not from weakness or from threats. The EU Parliament represents 27 nation states with nearly 500,000,000 citizens. Its primary duty must be to this constituency and not to an expansionist nuclear state in the Middle East that refuses to comply with international law, or even to sign the nuclear NPT.

6. The EU Parliament is urged to vote against this proposed agreement.

Michael Deas

Michael Deas's picture

Michael Deas is a Palestine solidarity organiser based in the UK.

He was formerly a campaigns officer with the Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC), the Palestinian civil society coalition that acts as the Palestinian reference of the movement for boycotts, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel until it complies with international law. 

You can get regular BDS updates from the BNC by following @BDSmovement. Michael Tweets from @michaeldeas