Guided by Israeli lobby, EU "punishes" Palestinian cancer patients
The EU is withholding $230 million in funding to Palestinians due to political pressure from the "Israel" lobby, as the bloc continues to ignore Israeli crimes.
The EU, by withholding some $230 million in funding to Palestinians, is making Palestinian cancer patients suffer, The Electronic Intifada reported.
On Tuesday, the Norwegian Refugee Council indicated that the withheld payment has been delayed since 2021 “as the European Union continues to condition the release of the money on specific changes to Palestinian school textbooks.”
The Council warned that the delay “is crippling critical sectors and services, including healthcare in occupied East Jerusalem (Al-Quds), with dire consequences for patients needing treatment at hospitals."
Jan Egeland, the Norwegian Refugee Council’s secretary-general, considered that “These restrictions punish terminally ill patients who cannot get lifesaving medicine and force children to go hungry when parents cannot afford to buy food."
“Palestinians are paying the cruelest price for political decisions made in Brussels,” he added.
The Electronic Intifada highlighted that as a result of this situation, at least 500 newly Palestinians diagnosed with cancer are unable to access life-saving treatments at the Augusta Victoria hospital in Al-Quds, while others are experiencing severe delays in receiving their critical treatment.
Israeli lobby lies
According to the Intifada, Oliver Varhelyi, a senior official in the European Commission, waged a campaign against Palestinians and "has been promoting Israel lobby lies that Palestinian textbooks contain anti-Semitism and 'glorify terrorism."
It is noteworthy that Roberta Metsola, the president of the European Parliament, visited occupied Palestinian territories earlier this week and met Israeli President Isaac Herzog, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, as well as Foreign Minister Yair Lapid.
Good meeting with #Israel Foreign Minister @yairlapid today.— Roberta Metsola (@EP_President) May 23, 2022
The strength of our relationship lies in its openness, our history & common values.
Underlined the need to boost cooperation on our response to Ukraine, on food & energy security and to revitalise the peace process. pic.twitter.com/Mu2sQWmC77
During her visit, Metsola addressed the Israeli parliament, praising it as a “house of democracy”, ignoring "Israel's" crimes against Palestinians, including the recent murder of Al Jazeera reporter Shireen Abu Akleh.
She even said that the "partnership between the EU and Israel should be further strengthened."
The partnership between 🇪🇺 & 🇮🇱 should be further strengthened.— Roberta Metsola (@EP_President) May 23, 2022
My message to @KnessetENG was one of hope.
Hope in peace, in the future, in justice, in the certainty of belief.@Europarl_EN will always be a strong ally in the quest for peace.
Speech 👉https://t.co/eMvhkuOxJB pic.twitter.com/CyPqvXAHxQ
"Israel" denies European Parliament members entry
On the other hand, Israeli authorities denied entry to a delegation led by Manuel Pineda, a member of the European Parliament, following Abu Akleh's murder.
Right now I should be on this flight to visit Palestine 🇵🇸 with a Delegation from the European Parliament in the wake of the killing of @AlJazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh pic.twitter.com/VjrX3ShlT0— Grace O'Sullivan MEP (@GraceOSllvn) May 22, 2022
According to The Electronic Intifada, "Pineda is the president of the parliament’s delegation for EU-Palestine relations, and thus plays an essential role in monitoring the use of European Union funding and the actions of the bloc’s officials on the ground."
In an open letter to the European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, an Israeli lobby group - the Simon Wiesenthal Center - said Pineda “must be expelled from the European Parliament,” claiming that the member of the European Parliament is a “spokesman for terrorists.”
The Simon Wiesenthal Center letter said that Pineda participated in the 2011 flotilla to Gaza aimed to break the Israeli siege on the Strip, adding that the Spanish member of the European Parliament associates with members of Palestinian and Lebanese political and resistance groups.
EU to Lebanese officials: Normalization in exchange for aid
It is noteworthy that Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar previously revealed that the EU Special Representative for the Peace Process in West Asia, Sven Koopmans, reportedly made an offer to Lebanese officials to normalize ties with the Israeli occupation in exchange for aid in food, medicine, and energy.
The Lebanese newspaper said that Koopmans reportedly considered normalization as Lebanon's “final solution” that would grant the country Western aid, which would help overcome the current economic crisis.
According to Al-Akhbar's report, Koopmans said the Lebanese and Palestinian resistance “succeeded in establishing their strength;” however, he added that these movements should follow a political path in order for Lebanon and Palestine to achieve “economic stability and prosperity.”