‘Israel needs to engage EU, not call it irrelevant’

Czech Foreign Minister Karl Schwarzenberg, considered one of Israel’s strongest supporters inside the EU, told The Jerusalem Post Wednesday that Israel needs to engage more intensively with Europe, and is not doing itself any favors by declaring that the European Union is in danger of becoming irrelevant in the Middle East.

Schwarzenberg, attending the 12th annual Herzliya Conference at the IDC, was referring to a statement put out by the Foreign Ministry last month following a communique very critical of Israel issued by Britain, France, Germany and Portugal.

The Czech Republic is considered, along with the Netherlands and Italy, among Israel’s strongest supporters inside the EU, and those countries – along with Romania, Bulgaria, and at times, Germany – form a bloc inside the EU that often tones down or stops critical statements and policies coming out of Brussels.

Jerusalem, Schwarzenberg said, could do more to win over other EU nations by engaging more actively both with the individual countries, and with the EU institutions in Brussels.

Israel has not, he added, won over friends by essentially telling the EU over the last few decades that its ally is the United States, and that “we want them to be active in the Middle East, we don’t want you to be active. Keep out.”...

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.