The European Union yesterday denied reports by Israeli media outlets regarding the postponement of its decision to label Israeli settlement products.
A statement was made by the EU delegation in Israel saying “Contrary to what was recently reported in Israeli media, work on the enforcement of EU legislation with regard to the labelling of settlement products has not been delayed.”
The statement also added, “The EU has not been asked to postpone such work.”
Two days ago “Haaretz” quoted European diplomatic sources and Israeli officials who have remained anonymous as saying that the EU had agreed to postpone this step until the end of June based on a request from the U.S.”
The newspaper also reported that the US Secretary of State, John Kerry, who is attempting to revive Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, intervened with EU Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton at Israel’s request.
On December 10th of last year, and again on May 12th of this year, EU member states reiterated their determination to enforce European law and agreements. Due to the fact that all Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank and in occupied East Jerusalem are illegal according to international law, the products that are produced in these settlements should not benefit from the preferential tariff conditions granted by the European Union regarding goods produced in Israel.
In April, a group of 13 foreign ministers from EU countries, including British foreign minister William Hague and French foreign minister Laurent Fabius, signed a letter reaffirming their support for Ashton’s decision on the labelling of products originating in Israeli settlements.