Lebanese slam EU "offer" to normalize in exchange for aid - Reports
Al-Akhbar says an EU Special Representative considered that normalization is Lebanon's “final solution” to overcome its economic crisis.
Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar 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.
According to Al-Akhbar, Koopmans' offer - described as tantamount to blackmail - was made during the EU diplomat's visit to Lebanon on 27 April, when meeting with President Michel Aoun and Foreign Minister Abdallah Bou Habib.
The people living in #Lebanon, including many Palestinian refugees, continue to suffer from the non-resolution of the #MEPP. I had productive meetings with President Aoun @General_Aoun @LBpresidency and Foreign Minister Bou Habib @Mofalebanon 1/1 pic.twitter.com/cL2xDg1VhE— Sven Koopmans (@EUSR_Koopmans) April 27, 2022
It is noteworthy that Koopmans arrived in Lebanon coming from occupied Palestinian territories where he met with "Israel" Security Minister Benny Gantz, two weeks before the Lebanese parliamentary elections.
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.
Al-Akhbar cited sources as saying that Koopmans told Lebanese officials, "You are not able to solve your crises and did not participate in peace negotiations before. We are now offering the doors open to the peace process, which will reflect prosperity on you."
The EU diplomat also claimed that “the peace process will solve the energy problem in Lebanon once and for all and allow the Lebanese to produce electricity and properly invest in oil and gas resources.”
He stressed that Lebanon “doesn’t have any practical solutions” without EU and US assistance, offering the country to join a “regional consortium” that would attract investments and revive the economy.
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.”
Koopmans also promised that the European Union would turn Gaza into a “new Dubai”.
On social media platforms, the European offer was met with strong condemnation, where users launched a hashtag against normalizing ties with the Israeli occupation.
EU tried to bribe Lebanon into normalizing ties with Israel: Report During a recent visit to Lebanon, the EU Special Representative for the Peace Process in West Asia, Sven Koopmans, reportedly made an offer to officials to normalize relations with Israel in— Johann Spischak (@SDGMasterglass) May 27, 2022
One user stressed that normalization is considered a betrayal that is rejected by honest and loyal Arab people, especially the Palestinians.
التّطبيع خيانة يرفضها كل شريف وفيّ للشّعب العربي وخاصّة الفلسطينيّ ولكلّ دمّ أُريقَ على أيدِ الصهاينة.#متحدون_ضد_التطبيع— نور الزّهراء الأمين (@nouralamiine) May 27, 2022
While another Twitter user said that "Israel" is absolute evil, and dealing with it is forbidden.
اسرائيل شرٌ مطلق— Ali Hadi (@AliHadi06853386) May 27, 2022
والتعامل معها حرام#متحدون_ضد_التطبيع pic.twitter.com/TtJdfaGKDs
Similarly, an activist wrote that some Arab regimes that normalized relations with the Israeli occupation will realize that they committed the biggest foolishness in their history.
قريبا ستدرك بعض الانظمة العربية التي طبعت مع كيان الاحتلال انها ارتكبت اكبر حماقة في تاريخها #متحدون_ضد_التطبيع— حسين مرتضى hoseinmortada (@HoseinMortada) May 27, 2022