EU Apologizes to Israel Following Harsh Accusations

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The European Union has taken a step back, retracting harsh statements released earlier accusing Israel’s “settlement policy” of being a major cause of the Palestinian Authority’s ailing economy, thereby costing EU residents additional money in taxes towards supporting the foreign aid required to assist the PA.

Foreign Ministry officials in Israel summoned the EU ambassador, Ramiro Cibrian-Uzal, reprimanding him for the EU statements. The diplomatic row resulted in a formal apology from EU officials to Israeli Ambassador to the EU Ron Kuriel. EU officials explained that the statement made by EU representative to eastern Jerusalem, Roy Dickinson, was released without the authority of the EU directorate.

In his harsh statement released last week, Dickenson blamed Israel for the taxation of EU citizens, explaining that Israel’s settlements are strangling the PA economy and therefore, the PA is increasingly dependent on foreign aid, with the burden falling on EU taxpayers. Foreign Ministry officials have expressed satisfaction over the apology.

(Yechiel Spira – YWN Israel)