Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, held on Thursday a meeting with EU Foreign Policy Chief, Catherine Ashton, in Brussels, and discussed the political process, and the EU decision regarding products of Israeli settlements.Abbas presented the obstacles peace talks face amidst ongoing Israeli violations, and its illegal construction and expansion of settlements in occupied Palestine.
Abbas said that the decisions of the EU comply with International Law, and international legitimacy.
Besides Abbas, the Palestinian side was represented by member of the Executive Committee of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), Dr. Saeb Erekat, Foreign Minister, Riyadh Al-Mailky, Presidency spokesperson, Nabil Abu Rodeina, Abbas’s adviser of diplomatic affairs, Majdy Al-Khaledy, and Palestinian Ambassador to the UN, Laila Shahid.
The Palestinian President stressed on the importance of implementing the guidelines approved by the EU regarding products made in Israeli settlements.
The decision came in form of guidelines that deny EU funding and support to all firms and entities operating in Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank.
The EU decided that, starting on January 2014, EU funding would no longer include entities operating in Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories, and that the EU makes a distinction between products made in Israel, and products made in its illegal settlements.
The guidelines, published back in July, affirmed the European stance regarding Israel’s settlements, and stating that EU bilateral relations and cooperation, and all bilateral agreements with Israel, do not include its settlements built in the West Bank that fell under occupation in June 1967.