|France urges EU to speak with one voice on PA state|
|Written by Chris Perver|
|Thursday, 01 September 2011 15:22|
French President Nicolas Sarkozy has called for the European Union to 'speak with one voice' on the establishment of a Palestinian state, even as preparations are made for a vote at the UN General Assembly later this month. At present the EU is still very much divided on the issue, with some states such as Germany and Italy opposing unilateral measures, while others such as Norway, France, Spain and Ireland generally supportive of the creation of a Palestinian state. Britain is yet undecided, awaiting the publication of the Palestinian proposal, while the US has voiced its opposition to the bid.
Quote: “"The 27 countries of the European Union must express themselves with one voice," Sarkozy said in an opening speech to an annual conference of French ambassadors. "The role of the U.S. is uncontested and irreplaceable, but everybody sees that it is not enough. We have to widen the circle of negotiation, think of the role and pertinence of the quartet."
Yesterday the European Union's international trade committee also voted in favour of giving the Palestinian Authority full access to European markets, a move that will pave the way for a trade agreement between them later in the year. The decision is being seen as a 'nod of approval' from the EU to the establishment of a Palestinian state in Judea, Samaria and east Jerusalem.
Quote: “"This deal is enormously important. It gives more power to the Palestinians to trade directly with the EU. And it's a signal of good will from the international community that comes at an important time," said Maria Eleni Koppa, a Greek socialist lawmaker who led the committee's discussion on the issue.
The timing of Nicolas Sarkozy's announcement is also quite significant. You may remember a few years back how it was the French President who pioneered the idea of a Union for the Mediterranean. We haven't heard much about it lately in the news. But this year has seen dramatic changes in the Middle East, especially concerning the southern member states of this new union. The totalitarian governments of Tunisia, Egypt and Libya have all fallen. Libya was one of the states that originally objected to being in the Union for the Mediterranean because of Israel's inclusion in the group. They were instead given observer status in the bloc. But now having been helped by the West to overthrow Colonel Gadaffi, perhaps the Libyan 'rebel government' will be more accepting of becoming part of a Westernised Mediterranean union, in the hope of preventing another dictator like Gadaffi rising to power again. And now all eyes are on Syria, another troublesome nation in Sarkozy's Union for the Mediterranean. It was always thought that a Union of the Mediterranean could never function because of the divergent governments that existed in the region. That may be about to change. You may remember how in April I drew a map of countries in the Union for the Mediterranean that were experiencing political upheaval. Today Libya is fallen, and Syria looks like it could be next in line.
Sarkozy's request for the EU to speak with one voice on the establishment of a Palestinian state is perhaps less about finding peace in the Middle East and perhaps more about realizing his vision of a European renaissance. As the French President once said, he wants “to be the president of a France that will set the Mediterranean on the path of its reunification, after 12 centuries of division”. Realising peace in the Middle East, and establishing an independent Palestinian state as a fully-fledged member of the Union for the Mediterranean, is part of his vision for this 'reunification'. And the Bible seems to indicate this is what will indeed come to pass. For the prophet Daniel predicted that the last world empire, the 'ten toes' of Nebuchadnezzar's image, would be a revived form of the old Roman Empire (Daniel 7). Just as the Bible predicted, the world's attention is now focused on Jerusalem (Zechariah 12:2-3). The nations of the world will soon be debating on the division of God's land. And it is the Antichrist, a world leader who will arise out of the revived Roman Empire (Daniel 9:26), who will be the one to divide it (Daniel 11:39). It can't be divided until the Antichrist appears, but the very fact it is fast becoming a global issue shows us just how close Christ's return must be. Time is short. What the Bible said must take place before Christ returns to this earth is now coming to pass. Praise God that Jesus Christ is coming back, just as Daniel foresaw...
Do you know this Son of Man? He knows you...
For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.
He is seeking for you today. He loves you so much, He gave His life for you upon the cross. He died so that your sins could be forgiven. And He rose again, and is coming back for all those who have trusted in Him for salvation. Do you want to know your sins forgiven? Do you want to be a citizen of God's kingdom? Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you shall be saved (Acts 16:31).