Monday

19th Aug 2019

Pro-Palestinian list to run in French European elections

The green, white, red and black of Palestine will be on display at next month's European Elections, when a pro-Palestinian party will seek election.

The new 'Euro-Palestine' party has been set up and may contend seats in up to three French constituencies

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"Peace in Palestine is our concern", Christophe Oberlin, who heads the group in Ile-de-France told Liberation.

"60 percent of Europeans think that Israel is the greatest threat to World peace", he added referring to a recent Eurobarometer poll set up by the European Commission.

Mr Oberlin, a Parisian surgeon aged 52, witnessed the conflict when travelling on missions in Gaza.

However, his previous political experience is limited to a mandate at a local municipality of Paris, where he was elected for the Socialist Party

The formation of the group is being taken as a sign of the strong sentiments among French people over the Mid-East conflict.

Anti-Semitism?

The Israeli government released figures earlier this year showing that 47 percent of anti-Semitic incidents in Western Europe take place in France.

Presenting the figures in Jerusalem in January, Israeli minister Natan Sharansky said, "the situation for Jews in France is very problematic. Last year, the number of anti-Semitic incidents doubled and 47 percent of anti-Semitic attacks in Western Europe took place in France".

The new Europe-Palestine list however refuses all allegations of anti-Semitism.

"It is the state of Israel, as it has functioned since 1967, that stirs new anti-Semitism", the historian Maurice Rajsfus said to Libération.

He added: "What is referred to as anti-Semitism is nothing but the reaction of young people, rejected by all sides, without any hope or future, who pose as avengers for suppressed Palestinians".

The election takes place on 13 June.

Orban praises von der Leyen after first face-to-face

The EU Commission president-elect said she had a "good talk" with Hungary's controversial premier. Orban returned the praise, saying said the former German defence minister "thinks with [a] central Europeans' head".

Von der Leyen aims to 'rebalance Europe'

The German EU Commission president-elect hopes to bridge divisions within the EU, as she meets with EU leaders setting up her team of commissioners.

Johnson's call for new Brexit deal hits EU 'no'

The UK will not nominate a new EU commissioner, the new British PM said in his first address to parliament, and insisted that the Irish backstop can be renegotiated - without giving any specifics on alternative solutions.

Selmayr shifted to Vienna, ahead of von der Leyen arrival

London and Washington had been rumoured, but instead the German political mastermind behind the EU commission will now work as a quasi-EU ambassador in Vienna. He irked many in Brussels but also shook things up.

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