The EU and the Palestinian Arab Minority in Israel (Adalah)


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February 2012

In 2005, in the jointly-agreed European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) Action Plan, the European Union (EU) and Israel decided to enhance their political dialogue and cooperation in the field of promotion and protection of human rights. In particular, they agreed to ‘Promote and protect rights of minorities, including enhancing political, economic, social and cultural opportunities for all citizens and lawful residents’. However, five years later, the rights of the Palestinian Arab minority in Israel continue to be violated, with a clear deterioration since the election of the current Israeli government in February 2009. In April 2010, the EU concluded in its progress report on the implementation by Israel of its Action Plan in 2009 that ‘little progress was registered in the situation of the Arab minority’.1 Despite this recognition, EU policy concerning the rights of the Palestinian Arab minority in Israel has been weak. The Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Network (EMHRN) and its working group on Palestine, Israel and Palestinians decided to inquire further into EU policies towards the Palestinian Arab minority in Israel and to try to contribute to their strengthening.

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