EU/Israel — Announcement by Israel on Gaza blockade

State­ment by Cather­ine Ash­ton, High Rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Euro­pean Union for For­eign Affairs and Secu­ri­ty Policy/European Com­mis­sion Vice-Pres­i­dent on announce­ment by Israel on Gaza block­ade
Cather­ine Ash­ton, the High Rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the Union for For­eign Affairs and Secu­ri­ty Pol­i­cy and Vice-Pres­i­dent of the Com­mis­sion, made the fol­low­ing state­ment today:

“Today’s announce­ment by the Gov­ern­ment of Israel is anoth­er sig­nif­i­cant step for­ward in the review of its pol­i­cy on Gaza. As I have always said, once imple­ment­ed, Israel’s new pol­i­cy should improve the lives of the ordi­nary peo­ple of Gaza while address­ing the legit­i­mate secu­ri­ty con­cerns of Israel.

While the details of the lists will have to be care­ful­ly exam­ined, I hope that the com­plete imple­men­ta­tion of these mea­sures will allow for the recon­struc­tion of Gaza and the revival of its econ­o­my. Pri­vate sec­tor devel­op­ment and com­mer­cial activ­i­ty, includ­ing exports, will be cru­cial for the recov­ery of Gaza. The move­ment of per­sons and trade between Gaza and the West Bank should remain one of the key objec­tives.

To enable the peo­ple in Gaza to recon­struct their homes, to build schools, to improve infra­struc­ture and start new busi­ness­es, the capac­i­ty of cross­ings must be expand­ed . As stat­ed by EU for­eign min­is­ters last week, the EU is ready to sup­port Israel and the Pales­tin­ian Author­i­ty in the open­ing of land cross­ings.

I reit­er­ate once again that Gilad Shalit must be released imme­di­ate­ly.

We will con­tin­ue dis­cus­sions and exam­ine the details of the pro­posed changes and their imple­men­ta­tion with Israel, the Pales­tin­ian Author­i­ty and the Quar­tet Part­ners.”

Coun­cil of the Euro­pean Union