JERUSALEM, May 26, 2017 (WAFA) - European Union (EU) Heads of Cooperation in Jerusalem and Ramallah visited Thursday different localities and projects in Area C in the Jordan Valley, the Office of the EU Representative said in a press release.
The Norwegian Head of Cooperation also joined the visit. The group was briefed on various humanitarian and developmental projects funded by the EU and its Member States supporting the Palestinian communities in the area.
According to the press release, the EU Heads of Cooperation were briefed at Az Zubeidat village by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) on the challenges facing the Jordan Valley area.
The briefing focused on the obstacles that are blocking a sustainable social and economic development of the Palestinian communities in the area.
Representatives of the Ministry of Local Government and the Local Councils of Az Zubeidat and Al Jiftlik briefed the group about the status of the master plans and their discussion with the Israeli authorities in this regard. The group then visited a silage production farm supported by EU Member States.
The main aim of the actions implemented and supported by the EU in Area C is to preserve the viability of a two state solution.
At their meetings of July 2015 and January 2016, EU foreign ministers unanimously voiced their strong opposition to Israel‘s settlement policy and actions taken in this context, such as building the separation barrier beyond the 1967 line, demolitions and confiscation - including of EU funded projects - evictions, forced transfers including of Bedouins, illegal outposts and restrictions of movement and access.
They urged Israel to end all settlement activity and to dismantle the outposts erected since March 2001, in line with prior obligations.
“Area C is part of the occupied Palestinian territory and part of any viable future Palestinian state,” said the Office of the EU Representative.
“All EU activity in the West Bank is fully in line with international humanitarian law,” it added.
It explained the EU provides humanitarian assistance to communities in need in Area C in accordance with the humanitarian imperative. The EU also works with the Palestinian Authority to develop Area C and support Palestinian communities there.