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EU announces €22 million of humanitarian assistance to Palestinians

May 1, 2019 2:35 P.M. (Updated: May 3, 2019 12:30 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- The European Union's foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini announced, on Tuesday, over €22 million of additional humanitarian assistance in support of the most vulnerable people in the besieged Gaza Strip and in the occupied West Bank.

Mogherini made the announcement at a press conference ahead of the extraordinary session of the International Donor Group for Palestine, the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee (AHLC).

She said the AHLC "is a tool that was created because of the Oslo agreements to pave the way towards the creation of two states in the Holy Land with a Palestinian State living in peace alongside the State of Israel."

She added, "25 years after that moment, the very possibility of two states is being dismantled. Settlement expansion continues while international mechanisms that protect the Palestinians in occupied territory are forcefully removed."

Mogherini stressed that "the two-state solution remains the only realistic way forward” and urged the Palestinians and Israel "to resume dialogue in order to preserve and re-launch the Oslo framework."

"Economic and fiscal agreements between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, including the Paris Protocol, must be implemented in full. A solution must be found to the current fiscal crisis in order to avoid a financial collapse that would have terrible consequences for the security of the region. The Palestinian economy needs resources to grow. We, as the European Union, are and stand ready to help the parties come back to dialogue based on their agreements," she continued.

The EU official said the European Union "is and will remain the biggest and the most reliable donor to the Palestinians" with more than €300 million per year for the past 15 years.

Mogherini reiterated, "This support will continue, because Palestinians have the right to live in dignity and because we Europeans know very well that this money is an investment in security for the Palestinians, for the Israelis, for the region and for ourselves” and announced over €22 million of additional humanitarian assistance in support of the most vulnerable people in Gaza and in the West Bank.

Mogherini said the gathering today in Brussels "is not for charity. It is for supporting a political objective together with the rest of the international community and together with the region, starting from the Arab world, united on this.

“This political objective is the two-state solution,” she noted, adding, “I want to be clear about this: a political two-state solution cannot be substituted by endless technical and financial assistance and capacity building. It would simply not work.”

Mogherini concluded, "We believe there is a solution to this conflict and it is the two-state solution. It requires our support and this is why we are here. It also requires political will. This is something that from our side is there for sure, but obviously, we also need this political will and this commitment from others."

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