Friday 20 June 2008

European Union has taken an unbalanced stance on Israel, says Franco Frattini

Article in Haaretz (via Solomonia)

"Italy's newly appointed foreign minister said Tuesday that the European Union has in the past taken an unbalanced stance on Israel, at times blurring the line between legitimate criticism and anti-Semitic sentiments.

Speaking before a forum on Israel-European relations in Berlin, Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini said: "I have to admit, if I look at the past, EU has taken on some occasions an unbalanced stance visa vis Israel, even by making an unacceptable confusion between the legitimate political criticism of the Israeli gut and the sentiment of intolerance against Jewish people that can become anti-Semitism."

Frattini, who was appointed by Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, is considered a supporter of Israel. His predecessor, Massimo D'Alema, often took a harsh line against Israel, particularly with regard to the Second Lebanon War and the situation in the Gaza Strip.

In his speech to the Israel-European forum, Frattini criticized the EU for delivering aid to Palestinian organizations which have incited against Israel.

"We ever found money given to NGOs close to Hamas using it to indoctrinates children against Israelis," he said, but added:

"Now things are changing completely. More awareness of the risk of growing anti-Semitism. Firmness vis a vis with Hamas. Support for the legitimate request of security of Israeli vis a vis the increasingly dangerous activities of Iran in the nuclear field.""

Read also:
European Commissioner Franco Frattini expresses regret at EU treatment of Israel

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