The postponement, which was asked by the group of the European United Left, won the support of the Greens and the Socialists at the opening of the parliament's plenary session.
Francis Wurtz, a French MEP who heads the group of the European Left requested that the vote be postponed "until Israel gives serious signs of goodwill demonstrated by tangible results on the ground that the European Parliament's official delegation in Israel and in the Palestinian territories had requested in June."
The parliament must give its assent on the proposal of the EU Council of Ministers to upgrade the EU-Israel relations.
In a statement, the group of the European Left said: "This is a clear signal set by the European Parliament: yes to an improvement of the relations between the EU and Israel but depending on the attitude of this country towards the peace process. One year after the Annapolis conference, it is a success which honours the European Parliament."
Last month, the European Parliament’s foreign affairs committee recommended that the parliament gives its assent for increased participation by Israel in European policies and programmes as part of the European Neighbourhood Policy, but linked this participation to respect for the commitments given by Israel at the Annapolis Mideast conference.
Israel’s Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, who was in Brussels on Tuesday, pleaded for upgrading the EU-Israel relations in a hearing of the European Parliament’s foreign affairs committee."