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Israel warns EU over Jerusalem issue
Jerusalem, DEC 1 (Agencies):
Published on 1 Dec. 2009 11:56 PM IST
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Israel today warned the European Union against its purported plan to recognise a unilateral Palestinian declaration of statehood by dividing Jerusalem, saying it would harm efforts to renew peace negotiations. “The process being led by Sweden harms the European Union’s ability to take part as a significant mediator in the political process between Israel and the Palestinians,” the Israeli Foreign Ministry said in a statement. “After the important steps taken by the government of Israel to enable the resumption of negotiations with the Palestinians, the European Union must now exert pressure on the Palestinians to return to the negotiating table. Steps like those being led by Sweden only contribute to the opposite effect,” the statement said. Israeli daily Ha’aretz reported today that EU foreign ministers are expected to officially call next week for Jerusalem to be divided so as to serve as the capitals of both Israel and a future Palestine state. A draft document, authored by the current holder of the rotating EU presidency, Sweden, and in possession of the daily, implies that the European Union would recognise a unilateral Palestinian declaration of statehood. The Jewish state is waging a diplomatic campaign to stop the EU from issuing such an endorsement, but diplomats close to the deliberations believe it is “virtually inevitable”.

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