[QODLink]
Middle East

EU and Israel agree on controversial research

The deal enables hi-tech companies and research institutes in Israel to join the 77bn euro programme.

Last updated: 06 Jun 2014 13:25
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
EU-Israel relations have long been difficult, notably over Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank [EPA]

European Commission chief Jose Manuel Barroso is to formally sign a controversial EU-Israel research programme with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

The outgoing head of the European Union executive will hold talks with Netanyahu on Sunday before taking part in a signing ceremony the next day allowing Israel to become the only non-European country to benefit from the EU's Horizon 2020 scientific research programme.

After months of dispute, the two sides agreed on a compromise in November enabling hi-tech companies and research institutes in Israel to join the 77bn euro programme, AFP news agency reported.

EU-Israel relations have long been difficult, notably over Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank. Brussels on Thursday said that it was "deeply disappointed" after Israel unveiled plans to build another 3,200 settler homes, and called for the decision to be reversed.

"This move is unhelpful to peace efforts," the EU said in a statement. 

Israel had objected to EU guidelines published in July banning funding and financial dealings with settlements in the occupied West Bank and annexed east Jerusalem from January this year.

The guidelines would have forced Israel to recognise in writing that settlements, which are illegal under international law, are not part of Tel Aviv in any future EU agreements.

But after negotiations, it was agreed the EU would appendix an agreement to stop research funds serving institutions in the West Bank, while Israel would add its own appendix stating non-recognition of the new guidelines.

Palestinians consider any settlements built beyond the pre-1967 territorial lines to be illegal and an obstacle to peace, while Netanyahu refuses to recognise the 'Green line' as a starting point for negotiations.

271

Source:
AFP
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
'Justice for All' demonstrations swell across the US over the deaths of African Americans in police encounters.
Six former Guantanamo detainees are now free in Uruguay with some hailing the decision to grant them asylum.
Disproportionately high number of Aboriginal people in prison highlights inequality and marginalisation, critics say.
Nearly half of Canadians have suffered inappropriate advances on the job - and the political arena is no exception.
Featured
Women's rights activists are demanding change after Hanna Lalango, 16, was gang-raped on a bus and left for dead.
Buried in Sweden's northern forest, Sorsele has welcomed many unaccompanied kids who help stabilise a town exodus.
A look at the changing face of North Korea, three years after the death of 'Dear Leader'.
While some fear a Muslim backlash after café killings, solidarity instead appears to be the order of the day.
Victims spared by the deadly disease are reporting blindness and other unexpected post-Ebola health issues.