On their first full day in Palestine, GUE/NGL MEPs heard continued calls for a radical shift in how the international community acts when it comes to the plight of the Palestinian people.

GUE/NGL MEP Martina Anderson said: “From our meetings with both peace organisations and Palestine Liberation Organization representatives what we heard was a clear call for the international community to realise that the negotiations are over. Israel enters into the negotiations but then carries out deadly military attacks and land grabs – a direct contradiction with the peace it claims to want to work towards. Rather than continuing their support for talks, world leaders should be loudly denouncing the Israeli occupation of Palestine for what it is, the deliberate and systematic extermination of Palestinians from their land, nothing short of social genocide.

“We listened to representatives from organisations of both former Israeli soldiers and Palestinian prisoners who are now coming together to work towards peace. This was hugely encouraging. These are the types of organisations that the EU should be supporting. We also met with renowned Haaretz journalist Amira Hass; it’s hugely important for her expertise and insight into the reality of life under occupation to be felt in Israeli society.”

GUE/NGL MEP Neoklis Sylikiotis said: “On our first day in Palestine we saw first-hand how Israel attempts to keep polarizing society along religious lines. They use settlers to change the demography of the town and turn it into a city only for Jews. But Jerusalem is a shared space, as was agreed in 2003 – it should be a city for people of all and no faith. The EU and the international community should act in such a way to stop these settlements.”

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