France says to release 230mil. euros in Libyan assets

December 14, 2011

(h/t @TheJewess)(jpost.com)(Tripoli) France will release 230 million euros ($300 million) in frozen assets to Libya’s new authorities in the next few days, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe said on a visit to Tripoli on Wednesday.
“We are sure that the frozen amount belongs to the Libyan people. France will release 230 million euros in the next few days and we are going to work with our partners in the Security Council to unfreeze the (remaining) Libyan assets,” Juppe, speaking through an interpreter, told a news conference.


A French minister of Arab origin says ‘there is no such thing as moderate Islam’

December 5, 2011
Jeannette Bougrab, who is originally from Algeria, is a French junior minister with responsibility for youth. She said that any legislation based on Islamic sharia law “inevitably” imposed restrictions on rights and freedoms. (Reuters)Jeannette Bougrab, who is originally from Algeria, is a French junior minister with responsibility for youth. She said that any legislation based on Islamic sharia law “inevitably” imposed restrictions on rights and freedoms. (Reuters)(Al Arabiya/ AFP) A French minister said there was no such thing as moderate Islam, calling recent election successes by Islamic parties in Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia “worrying” in an interview published Saturday.
Jeannette Bougrab, a junior minister with responsibility for youth, told Le Parisien newspaper that legislation based on Islamic sharia law “inevitably” imposed restrictions on rights and freedoms.
Bougrab is of Algerian origin, whose father fought on the French colonial side during Algeria’s war of independence, and said she was speaking as “a French woman of Arab origin.”
“It’s very worrying,” she was quoted as saying. “I don’t know of any moderate Islam.”
“There are no half measures with sharia,” she added. “I am a lawyer and you can make all the theological, literal or fundamental interpretations of it that you like but law based on sharia is inevitably a restriction on freedom, especially freedom of conscience.”
She was reacting to electoral successes scored by the Ennahda party in Tunisia, the Justice and Development Party in Morocco and the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.
French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe has called for dialogue with such parties as long as they respect certain criteria, including the rule of law and women’s rights.
Bougrab conceded that ousted Tunisian and Egyptian rulers Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and Hosni Mubarak had used the Islamist “threat” to win backing from Western countries, but she added, “We shouldn’t go to the other extreme.”
And she hit out at the 30 percent of Tunisians living in France who had voted for Ennahda in last month’s polls. “I am shocked that those who have rights and freedoms here gave their votes to a religious party,” she said.

Avigdor Lieberman to France: Send the Foreign Legion to Gaza, Don’t send girls with olive branches

November 15, 2011
Media_httpitelegraphc_seasg(INN) Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Monday that Israel would be happy to lift its blockade on Hamas-run Gaza if France would pull its weight – by sending in the Foreign Legion to keep order.
Foreign Minister Avigdor LiebermanLieberman, known for his candid and colorful mode of expression, was responding to recent criticism from the government of French President Nicolas Sarkozy.
The Foreign Minister said he had raised the idea during talks with his French counterpart Alain Juppe in June.
“I have no problem in lifting the blockade tomorrow as long as there is a force to inspect everything coming into the Gaza Strip and (prevent) terrorist activity,” Lieberman told MPs on Monday.
“Instead of us doing it ourselves, you (can) send the French Foreign Legion!”
A French foreign ministry official confirmed Lieberman’s previous remarks to Alain Juppe to AFP.
“Don’t send girls with olive branches,” Lieberman added Monday, referencing a boatload of French activists who tried to breach Israel’s blockade on Gaza.
The United Nations Palmer Report on the 2010 Mavi Marmara incident concluded Israel’s blockade of Gaza was both “legal and appropriate” as a means of curtailing arms to the Hamas terror organization.
Israeli officials note that the Kerem Shalom crossing to Gaza is never at full capacity despite all requests for aid to Gaza being met.
French and Western criticism of Israel’s arms embargo – predicated on the claim there is a ‘humanitarian crisis’ in Gaza – is unfounded, the officials say.  Bustling Gazan malls and thriving hotels bear this out. The humanitarian problem in Gaza is the wide gap between rich and poor, with the former ignoring the latter.

LOLZ… you ROCK!


Sarkozy is closer to Israel’s position than Obama

August 1, 2011

At a press conference in Madrid last week, [French] Foreign Minister Alain Juppe publicly declared that “there will be no solution to the conflict in the Middle East without recognition of two nation-states for two peoples. The nation-state of Israel for the Jewish people, and the nation-state of Palestine for the Palestinian people.” Then, lest anyone overlook the statement’s significance or think it a mere slip of the tongue, his ministry yesterday circulated copies of it.
This is truly groundbreaking. Until now, no EU country has been willing to state publicly that an Israeli-Palestinian agreement must recognize Israel as the Jews’ nation-state, though the EU routinely details the concessions it expects Israel to make…Sarkozy realized since Israel won’t sign a deal without such provisions, Europe does need to start publicly demanding these concessions of the Palestinians. Otherwise, they will keep deluding themselves the world will eventually force a complete Israeli capitulation. images via radioislam.orgEvelyn Gordon, Commentary via calevbenyefuneh.blogspot.com


Juppé: Israeli-PA Summit Initiative ‘Not Dead’

June 27, 2011

in other words the Jew killers have a lot to gain right now by negotiating…
French Foreign Minister, Alain Juppé, said Sunday that the French initiative to hold a summit in Paris between Israeli and Palestinian Authority leaders is “not dead.”

Juppé said that the PA leadership had agreed to hold the summit and that Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s response on the issue was not negative. He added that a final decision on the summit will be made during a meeting of the Quartet in early July. via Israel National News and dead horse via PiloSEO.com


We mustn’t fear September scare tactics

June 4, 2011

Strategic Affairs minister rejects notion that Palestinian bid for UN unilateral declaration of state will lead to int’l isolation; says Israel ready to renew talks: “We’ve been waiting for Abbas for two years.”
Strategic Affairs Minister Moshe Ya’alon on Saturday rejected claims that Palestinian plans to go to the UN for a unilateral statehood declaration constitute a “diplomatic tsunami” for Israel, saying “we must not be afraid of the September scare tactics.” The Likud minister made the comments during an interview with Channel 2.
Ya’alon said that Israel was taking diplomatic action to stop the UN Security Council from unilaterally recognizing a Palestinian State in September. He pointed out his own recent trip to Moscow to advance Israel’s diplomatic interests and the efforts of President Shimon Peres, who warned South American leaders about the harm of a unilateral statehood while on his current trip to Italy. Ya’alon said that a unilateral declaration of Palestinian statehood in the UN General Assembly would not lead to Israel’s isolation or have any concrete effect on the country. He added that Israel was prepared for a Palestinian outbreak of violence as well.
The Likud minister said the government would discuss French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe’s proposed peace conference in Paris in the coming days.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday cautiously welcomed a French proposal to convene Israeli and Palestinian negotiators in Paris to try to renew collapsed peace talks. Juppe this week offered to host talks to discuss ideas for a Palestinian state raised last month by US President Barack Obama, aiming to avert a showdown at the United Nations in September.
“We said that in principle this initiative is acceptable,” Abbas told Reuters, two days after his talks with Juppe in Ramallah.
Abbas said the French plan “talks about President Obama’s vision …in which he spoke about a [Palestinian] state with the ’67 borders with Israel, Egypt and Jordan.”
Under the plan discussed with Juppe, “neither side would carry out unilateral actions,” Abbas added.
Ya’alon said that there were “paradigm differences between the two sides.” He stated that while Abbas had expressed willingness to go to Paris, the PA president had not agreed to begin negotiations with Israel.
“We are ready to go to the table. We have been waiting for Abu Mazen [Abbas] for two years,” Ya’alon told Channel 2.
Juppe said he is “slightly optimistic” after his Mideast visit.
“I would be lying if I said I was very optimistic. I am slightly optimistic,” Juppe said after his talks with Netanyahu.
The French proposal calls for Israeli and Palestinian negotiators to meet this month or by early July with an eye to reviving talks which broke off last year in a dispute on Jewish settlement building in land Palestinians seek for a state.
Reuters contributed to this report
JPOST.COM STAFF
06/04/2011 via docstalk.blogspot.com

Soeren: Europeans Threaten to Recognize Palestinian State Unless Israel Negotiates With Terrorist Group

May 14, 2011

Several European countries are threatening to recognize an independent Palestinian state — on the basis of the pre-1967 boundaries to include the West Bank, Gaza, and with East Jerusalem as its capital — if Israel refuses to return to the negotiating table with the Palestinian Authority by September. Given the new “reconciliation deal” between the rival Palestinian factions Fatah and Hamas, Europeans are effectively demanding that Israel negotiate with Hamas, an Islamist terrorist group unambiguously committed to Israel’s destruction.
The Palestinians say they are on track to unilaterally declare statehood at the annual meeting of the United Nations General Assembly when it opens in New York in September. More than 110 countries — more than half of all UN members — have already recognized Palestine diplomatically. These includes European Union members Hungary, Poland and Romania. In recent weeks, however, the momentum to recognize a Palestinian state has been building in larger, more influential European countries.
In France, President Nicolas Sarkozy, in an interview with the L’Express newsmagazine on May 5, said: “If the peace process is still dead in September, France will face up to its responsibilities on the central question of the recognition of a Palestinian state. The idea that there is still plenty of time is dangerous. Things have to be brought to a conclusion” before September. Sarkozy also said that during the next few months, European countries would try “to relaunch the peace process along with the Americans, because Europe cannot be the main one paying for Palestine and yet remain a minor figure politically in the matter.”
On April 21, Sarkozy hosted Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas at the Élysée Palace in Paris to discuss Palestinian statehood. Ahead of that meeting, the French Foreign Ministry said the Palestinians are “more than ever ready to establish a state and run it in a credible and peaceful way.” On April 22, French Ambassador to the United Nations Gérard Araud said: “The recognition of a Palestinian state is an option that we are currently thinking about, with our European partners.” On March 22, French Prime Minister François Francois Fillon said that “2011 must be the year of the creation of a Palestinian state.” On March 15, French Foreign Minister Alain Juppé said the recognition of a Palestinian state by the European Union is a “possibility that should be kept in mind.”
In Britain, Prime Minister David Cameron told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on May 3 that Britain is prepared to formally recognize an independent Palestinian state in September unless Israel opens peace talks with the Palestinians. That warning came after Netanyahu told Cameron that the so-called unity pact between rival Palestinian factions Fatah, which rules the West Bank, and Hamas, the Islamic resistance movement that rules Gaza, is a “tremendous blow to peace and a great victory for terrorism.” Palestinian leaders say the deal is a major step towards an independent state, but Israel fears the reconciliation will open the door to Hamas militants being deployed in the West Bank.
British diplomats described Cameron’s threat to recognize a Palestinian state as one of Britain’s few “levers” to press Israel to join talks with Palestinian officials. “The best way for the Israelis to avoid a unilateral declaration is to engage in peace talks,” a British official told the Guardian newspaper.
Despite promises to the contrary, the British government still has not amended a universal jurisdiction law that permits pro-Palestinian activist groups to bring lawsuits against Israeli politicians and military personnel for purported war crimes. On May 3, Israeli Major General Yohanan Locker was locked out of Britain. An integral member of Netanyahu’s circle of advisers and deputy head of the Israeli Air Force during Operation Cast Lead, Locker was forced to remain in Israel rather than risk arrest in London on charges of “war crimes.”
In Germany, Chancellor Angela Merkel has moved closer to other European countries in adopting an increasingly tough stance toward Israel. In February, Merkel chided Netanyahu for failing to make “a single step to advance peace.” On February 18, Germany (along with Britain and France) voted in favour of a UN Security Council resolution condemning Israeli settlement-building in disputed territory as illegal.
Nevertheless, Germany remains one of the only major European countries explicitly to say that it will not recognize a Palestinian state without Israel’s acceptance. Ahead of a visit to Berlin by Mahmoud Abbas on May 5, a German government spokesman said: “The policy of the German government remains what Chancellor [Angela] Merkel said after talks with Israel’s Prime Minister [Benjamin] Netanyahu in April: that in her view a unilateral recognition would not contribute to the goal” of a two-state solution. Merkel had said after her talks with Netanyahu on April 7 that any German recognition of a Palestinian state would be within the context of mutual Israeli-Palestinian recognition.
In Norway, Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre, in an interview with Haaretz newspaper on March 3, said that his country would consider recognizing a Palestinian state if no progress is made in the peace process by September 2011. He said Israel runs the risk of being seen internationally as a “permanent occupier” if the stalemate in the peace process continues. “Europe,” he said, “is watching for results and initiatives toward a settlement of this conflict. The major challenge for Israel in this century is that it stands out as an occupier in breach of international law. This to me is a big challenge to the quality of Israel — which is to be a democracy and a player in the first division in the world. I think that in key European capitals the hope to see that change is thinner than it used to be.”
In Spain, Foreign Minister Trinidad Jiménez said on February 9 that 2011 would be a “crucial year” for Palestinian statehood: “Spain is firmly committed to the creation of a Palestinian state. We are going to put all of our efforts and capacities to achieve it.” Spain and neighbouring France have been laying the political groundwork for the European Union to recognize a Palestinian state for more than a year.
Former Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Ángel Moratinos and former French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner in February 2010 penned an influential article entitled, “A Palestinian State: When?” which laid out their vision for Europe’s role in creating a Palestinian state.
The article reminded readers that the European Union is the biggest single provider of financial aid to the Palestinians. Often described as a “payer but not a player” in the Middle East, the authors argued that the European Union must work more aggressively in bringing about Palestinian statehood. They also argued that time is of the essence and that the European Union “must not confine itself to the … outlines of the final settlement” and “should collectively recognize the Palestinian State.… There is no more time to lose. Europe must pave the way.” The authors say the upcoming twentieth anniversary of the Madrid peace conference, which was convened in October 1991, would be a good moment to recognize Palestinian independence.
In a separate interview with the Paris-based Journal du Dimanche, Kouchner said: “The issue currently before us is the building of a reality. France is training Palestinian police and businesses are being created in the West Bank…. It follows that one can envision the proclamation soon of a Palestinian state, and its immediate recognition by the international community, even before negotiating its borders.” He added: “If by mid-2011, the political process has not ended the [Israeli] occupation, I would bet that the developed state of Palestinian infrastructure and institutions will be such that the pressure will force Israel to give up its occupation.”
In Brussels, the European Union adopted a resolution in December 2009 that for the first time explicitly calls for Jerusalem to become the future capital of a Palestinian state. The EU declared: “If there is to be a genuine peace, a way must be found through negotiations to resolve the status of Jerusalem as the future capital of two states.” Israel has always maintained that Jerusalem will remain its undivided capital, regardless of any future peace settlement with the Palestinians. This has been the declared policy of all Israeli governments, both left and right.
Meanwhile, several European countries have already upgraded their diplomatic relations with the Palestinian Authority. On March 9, Danish Prime Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen said that Denmark would upgrade the status of the Palestinian delegation in Copenhagen to a mission. On March 8, British Foreign Secretary William Hague announced London’s decision to upgrade its presence in Jerusalem from a delegation to a mission. On January 25, Ireland decided to upgrade the Palestinian diplomatic mission in Dublin to the status of an official embassy. Cyprus, France, Portugal and Spain have also in recent months upgraded their diplomatic relations with the Palestinians.
In an interview with France 24 television, Abbas said “a certain number of European countries have recently sent additional delegations and official representatives to the Palestinian territories. From our side, we are already treating them like ambassadors.”
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