|Brazen: The EU flag flies above an unauthorised building erected for Palestinians in Area C of the West Bank (Daily Mail caption)|
It's about time someone noticed this.
From The Daily Mail:
The EU is claiming diplomatic immunity after using taxpayers' money to build unauthorised settlements and roads on Israeli parts of the West Bank, MailOnline can reveal.So the EU is justifying violating the fundamental basis of the Oslo Accords - which are legal instruments - by saying that their own idea of a "humanitarian imperative" is more important.
An Israeli NGO launched legal action after photographing EU flags flying above buildings on land placed under Israeli jurisdiction by the Oslo Accords, to which the EU is a signatory. EU bureaucrats are avoiding court by citing diplomatic rules.
The buildings, which are given to Palestinians, are intended to 'pave the way' for more land to be brought under Palestinian control, according to official EU papers. Many are bulldozed by Israel only for the EU to repeatedly rebuild them, generating more costs for the taxpayer.
Leaked documents obtained by MailOnline show that the EU – which receives £350million per week from Britain – is using diplomatic rules to place officials above the law, foiling attempts to hold bureaucrats accountable.
MPs have expressed outrage that the EU is using aid money to 'meddle' in a foreign territorial dispute, and branded its actions 'dodgy'.
'It is deeply concerning that the EU falls back on diplomatic immunity after breaking planning regulations,' Jacob Rees-Mogg MP told MailOnline. 'The UK Government would take a very dim view of a friendly state doing that to us.
'Diplomatic immunity is there to protect envoys from unjust treatment, not to protect the high-handed behaviour of arrogant bureaucracies.'
He added: 'The EU maintains that it is based on fundamental principles of rule of law and support for democracy. But when this clashes with its bureaucratic bungling, neither rule of law nor democracy seem important.'
The projects come at a cost of tens of millions of Euros in aid money, a proportion of which comes from the British taxpayer. Construction is also funded by international charities, including Oxfam.
EU flags are mounted on the buildings, leading them to become known locally as the 'EU settlements'.
'The EU should comply with the law. It should not be meddling in the Middle East, then hiding behind some dodgy use of diplomatic immunity,' Andrew Percy MP told MailOnline.
'This is a gross waste of taxpayers' money. It's another example of money given to the EU over which Parliament has no real oversight.
'The British electorate is contributing to this but we are completely unaware of how it's being spent. We don't know who is spending this, and we can't vote them out.'
He added: 'No wonder the EU think they're above the law. They are untouchable.'
Mr Percy also expressed serious concerns that the EU is 'undermining the Oslo Accords' and 'damaging attempts at peace' in the Middle East. 'Not only is it a waste of taxpayers' money, it is morally questionable,' he said.
This month, the EU approved a further £193million of aid to the Palestinian Authority.
Professor Eugene Kontorovich, an international lawyer from the Northwestern University School of Law in Chicago, said: ‘There’s no question, the EU is openly in violation of international law.'
But an EU spokeswoman argued that the construction was legal 'in accordance with the humanitarian imperative', and said the EU believed that Area C would be 'part of any viable future Palestinian state'.
She would not say whether or not the EU's actions breached the Oslo Accords.
But what humanitarian imperative is it to move people into buildings that are going to be demolished within months?
The answer is that the EU wants video of Israel demolishing illegal structures to be shown. They want the UN to issue reports counting how many structures were destroyed and how many people who had other places to live only shortly beforehand are now "homeless." Especially children. They make great video.
In other words, the EU's "humanitarian imperative" is to demonize Israel, not to help Palestinians.
And as this article shows, they literally hold themselves above the law. A systematic and illegal campaign to violate written agreements, vilify Israel and pre-judge the outcome of negotiations is protected as "diplomatic immunity."
No wonder the Palestinians don't want to negotiate with Israel. The EU already is supporting their claims with its willingness to spend hundreds of millions of Euros without any concessions towards peace on their part.
The EU could work together with Israel to improve the existing Arab villages in Area C. It can lobby Israel to loosen up zoning laws to help the existing Arab population in those areas build easier. But to swoop in, violate international law by illegal building and then claim that they are untouchable is immoral, illegal and arrogant.
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