|EU agrees to boost ties with Israel|
|Written by Chris Perver|
|Tuesday, 17 June 2008 05:42|
The European Union has agreed to strengthen its relations with Israel, following a meeting of the Israel-EU Association Council in Luxembourg yesterday. Last week Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad urged the EU not to upgrade its ties with the Israel, over what he claimed was its systematic violation of Palestinian human rights and disregard for international law. As a result of the Arab protest over this issue, it was thought that the EU may be pressurized into linking the agreement to progress in the Middle East peace process. And the EU has put such a clause in the text, stating that "the process of developing a closer EU-Israeli partnership needs to be, and to be seen, in the context of the broad range of our common interests and objectives which notably include the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict through the implementation of the two-state solution".
Quote: "In the diplomatic sphere there will be an institutionalisation of the diplomatic dialogue between the Israeli and EU leadership, by means of regular annual meetings at a senior level. In addition, there will be increased meetings between government ministers, senior officials and parliamentarians from both sides.
The EU has not intimated how long this process of upgrading their relations is likely to take. There are also fears that Israel's improved relations with Europe could upset French President Nicholas Sarkozy's plan for the establishment of a Mediterranean Union, which has been scheduled for next month. Several Arab states have expressed concerns over the plan, objecting to the inclusion of Israel in the bloc and fearing that rich European nations will dominate the group. But most Arab leaders have accepted Sarkozy's invitation to the July summit. Meanwhile, a third international summit has been proposed by European nations to speed progress towards the establishment of a Palestinian state. In December 2007 we had the Palestinian Donors Conference in Paris, during which over $7 billion was pledged to fund the establishment of a state. Most of the money was donated by Western nations, and so far only a tenth of it has actually been received. In May 2008 we had the Palestinian investment conference in London. And now Germany is planning to hold a conference in Berlin to garner support for the strengthening of Palestinian institutions and security services. The conference will be held on June 24th, and the guest list includes representatives from over 40 nations, including Israel, the Palestinian Authority, the European Union, the United Nations, the Arab League, Russia, Japan, and Canada, among others.
Quote: ""There can only be a lasting solution to the Middle East conflict if Israel and Palestine live side by side in peace as two independent states. But a state needs more than territory - it needs above all else functioning institutions," German sources explained. "Alongside a parliament and government, these include well-equipped security authorities and an independent judiciary."
As we can see, despite a clear lack of progress in the Middle East peace process, the international community is doing its utmost to bring about a solution to this conflict. They are pouring billions of dollars into a process which will eventually see the parting of God's land and the division of Jerusalem (Daniel 11:39, Revelation 12:2). But this process will not bring peace. The Middle East conflict is not about land. It wasn't about land in 1948 or 1956. It's Israel's existence they cannot tolerate. The Bible states that following the ceding of east Jerusalem to the nations, the Antichrist will launch a campaign to wipe out God's chosen people once and for all (Revelation 16:13-14). Why all this hatred for the Jews? Why do the Arab nations want to see the state of Israel destroyed or relocated? Satan is bent on preventing the return of Christ to this earth and the setting up of the eternal state (Daniel 2:44). You see, it wouldn't bother Satan one bit if the state of Israel was relocated to Canada, Europe or even Saudi Arabia. Satan knows that Jerusalem is the place where God has chosen to put His Name (1st Kings 11:36). It is to Jerusalem and the Mount of Olives where Jesus Christ will return to (Zechariah 14:4). And it is from Jerusalem where the King of Kings and Lord of Lords will reign (Zechariah 14:16). And so it is east Jerusalem and the Temple Mount that Satan desperately wants to take control of. Of course he will gain control of these for a brief period of time, but praise God that Jesus Christ is coming back. Are you ready to meet Him? Amos 4:12 declares, "prepare to meet thy God". How do we prepare to meet our God? Confess that you are a sinner ("all have sinned", Romans 3:23), and that your sins have separated between you and your God (Isaiah 59:2). Turn away from your sins (Acts 2:38), and believe that Jesus Christ took God's punishment for your sins when he died upon the cross (Isaiah 53:6). The Bible says, he that believes on Jesus Christ for salvation has everlasting life (John 3:36). Trust in Him for salvation today.