EU/Gaza — Remarks by High Representative Ashton on Gaza

EU High Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Cather­ine Ash­ton made the fol­low­ing remarks today in the mar­gins of the Euro­pean Coun­cil meet­ing in Brus­sels:
“I look with great inter­est at what the Israeli gov­ern­ment has said and this is an ‘in prin­ci­ple’ state­ment at this stage. We’ve said there should be a change from a list of goods that are allowed into Gaza, a rever­sal of that, to a list of goods that are not allowed, in order to make sure that many many more goods can get in to Gaza to enable peo­ple to recon­struct their homes, to build schools, to replace infra­struc­ture and also to allow peo­ple to get on with their ordi­nary lives.

We also want to see that the cross­ings are open to enable that to hap­pen prop­er­ly, effec­tive­ly and quick­ly. And we’ve offered to Israel sup­port, of course linked to the Pales­tin­ian Author­i­ty, if we can be of val­ue. And tomor­row I’ll chair a meet­ing in Brus­sels of peo­ple involved in the EU’s work in the Mid­dle East to see what we can offer and then we can move for­ward, if that would be use­ful for Israel and for the Pales­tin­ian Author­i­ty.

I’ve been in touch with Israel, with the Pales­tin­ian Author­i­ty, with Egypt, Turkey, the US. This morn­ing I spoke with Sen­a­tor Mitchell to find out how the prox­im­i­ty talks are going, which of course are a very impor­tant aspect towards peace in the Mid­dle East. We hope that the ‘in prin­ci­ple’ state­ment of the gov­ern­ment of Israel can now be fol­lowed up very quick­ly with the detail which we shall look at with inter­est and hope that we can push for­ward, offer our sup­port, and ensure that the peo­ple of Gaza can now actu­al­ly move to a nor­mal life.”

Coun­cil of the Euro­pean Union