Israeli Minister of Defense Moshe Ya’alon declared, on Tuesday, that former British International Development Secretary Clare Short and three other European legislators would be arrested if they try to come to Israel, due to their involvement in a European-Palestinian organization calling for an end to the Israeli siege on Gaza.The Israeli government, last week, outlawed the organization, Council for European Palestinian Relations (CEPR), which allows the Israeli government to seize its assets and arrest any members of the organization.
Clare Short is a member of the Board of Directors of the non-profit group, and is a British Parliament member with the Labour Party, as well as a former Cabinet member in the British government. In response to Ya’alon’s declaration, she said, “Given Israel’s track record, the Defence Minister’s action is not surprising, but it is yet more evidence that Israel’s claim to be a democracy is eroding very fast.”
The CEPR states that its aim is “to promote dialogue and understanding between European, Palestinian and Arab parliamentarians and policy-makers. It seeks a resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict based on justice and the restoration of Palestinian rights, in accordance with international humanitarian and human rights law.”
Although Israel has declared the organization to be a threat to its national security, it has yet to provide evidence of the group’s involvement in any terrorist activity. In his statement, Ya’alon referred vaguely to the group’s opposition to the Israeli siege on Gaza as the reason for its being declared illegal.