President Peres appealed to the EU to prevent the move that could damage the peace process: "Make peace a priority. Don’t put in place irresponsible sanctions which will damage the peace process."

 President Peres appeals to European Union


Copyright: GPO

​(Communicated by the Office of the President)
President Shimon Peres, today (Thursday, 18 July 2013), addressed the recent decision by the European Union to prohibit economic activity beyond the 1967 lines and the progress in the efforts by Secretary of State Kerry to restart the peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians.

President Peres said, "From the latest information at my disposal, Secretary Kerry has succeeded in advancing the chance for opening peace talks. I am grateful for his efforts and I know that the endeavor is a serious one. The coming days are crucial and we are within touching distance. I believe that the significant effort will bear fruit on both the Israeli and the Palestinian side – both parties are making an effort to overcome the final obstacles."

Against this background President Peres also sent a message to the European Union to prevent the decision which could damage the peace process, "The relations between Israel and the European Union are friendly and I have great respect for the European Union – I turn to our friends in Europe and say, "Wait with your decision – make peace a priority. Don’t put in place irresponsible sanctions which will damage the peace process. The decision by the European Union is unnecessary and untimely. The issues are complex and sensitive, delay your decision." President Peres stressed, "Make peace the priority and give it a chance, your decision could lead to another crisis in our region."

President Peres added that there is great importance to the public support that the Arab League has given to Secretary Kerry’s efforts: "The public support shown by the Arab League is important to progress the negotiations."