The Israeli newspaper Israel Hayom reported on Wednesday that the French government has halted the transfer of donations worth €3,000 to an Israeli association operating in the Gilo settlement in occupied Jerusalem.
According to the newspaper, French parliamentarian Meyer Habib, who was elected to a seat representing French citizens living in several foreign countries, including Israel, said that he had previously received permission from the French government to support the Israeli association; therefore, he was surprised at the latest decision to prevent the transfer of funds on the grounds that the association in Gilo is located beyond the 1967 borders.
In December, Habib reportedly received an approval to make a financial contribution to the Daat Menachem association that supports French-Israeli students studying in Jerusalem.
In a letter that he sent to French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, Habib described the French decision to withhold the transfer as “shocking” and “unfair”, saying that it “works to ostracize residents of Jerusalem and Gilo in particular,” failing to acknowledge that the settlement is actually illegal under international law.
He added, “Everybody knows that no matter what agreement is reached [with the Palestinians], the neighbourhood of Gilo will remain a part of the State of Israel.”