The European Union (EU) on several occasions this quarter criticized Israeli demolitions of Palestinian homes and settlement expansion. An issue that the EU was particularly critical of was the Sur Bahir demolition of 70 apartments in 10 buildings, which overlaps between East Jerusalem and Areas A and B of the West Bank. The EU reaffirmed its position that such demolitions are illegal under international law and pointed out that areas A and B are under PA control in terms of civil issues as agreed to under the Oslo Accords.
The EU also, along with the United Kingdom and the United Nations, condemned Israel’s plans to expand 4 settlements in the West Bank, creating a total of 2,304 housing units for Israeli settlers. An official statement from the EU said that “[a]ll settlement activity is illegal under international law.” The EU simultaneously pointed out that Israel denies Palestinians the right to housing development.
By the end of the quarter, the EU mission to Israel in Tel Aviv was vandalized by right-wing Israeli activists. The activists wrote “EU GET OUT,” “GERMAN MONEY KILL JEWS,” and spilled red paint in the lobby of the mission. The vandalizing was headed by a prominent Israeli activist, Sheffi Paz, tied to the Yamina party and its leader Ayelet Shaked.