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Haupt arrow newsitems arrow Abbas' warning not to cut Gaza from a Palestinian State stirs EU's 2Gs concerns deeper than thought

Abbas' warning not to cut Gaza from a Palestinian State stirs EU's 2Gs concerns deeper than thought

Geschrieben von ACM
Wednesday, 04 February 2009

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EU chair, Czech Prime Minister Topolanek, may have guessed better than he thought when he recently said here that his "presidency (1 to 6/2009) will be marked by the 2 Gs : Gaza and Gas", revealed Abbas' and other Gaza debates and contacts in EU Parliament in Strasbourg...

The risk for Gaza to be cut off from a future Palestinian State was highlighted during Palestinian Authority President Mahmud Abbas' visit, as well as at other debates on the sidelines, which focused on the dramatic Human victims on the spot, on how to create a new Palestinian Unity coalition and how to address Israel's Security concerns.

- All this "aims at separating Gaza from the other Palestinian lands", Abbas warned from the outset, asking "not to allow the Division of our People", and of "its Geographic Unity", but to act "against any attempt for Separation". Gaza must not be divided from the rest of our Palestinian Homeland, he stressed.

This was echoed also at another Gaza debate which linked together 2 key MEPs in Strasbourg and 2 Palestinian representatives in Gaza, from Fatah and Hamas, thanks to EU Parliament's TV-TeleConference links :

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- "The problem, in Gaza is that Abbas has no control there", observed pro-Israeli MEP Goffrey Van Orden, member of the Foreign Affairs Committee. And "we aren't speaking of 3 States, but of 2 States' solution", he reminded.

- "If there is no peace progress, but settlers and other occupation incidents continue, even West Bank could become like Gaza", warned a Fatah representative, receiving van Orden's agreement as far as settlements are concerned.

Nobody contested that Thousands of innocent Civilians killed, including many Children and Women, many Homes and half of the economic infrastructure destroyed in Gaza was "appalling". As well as that rockets fired earlier by Hamas against Israel were an error.

But views diverged mainly on responsibilities (was it Hamas' rockets or Israeli Army's   "disproportionate" reaction ?), and in certain key parts of the solution to bring.

Noone mentioned the fact that both the break-up of Oslo Peace proces back in 2000 and the recent 2007-2009 Gaza upheavals, occured shortly after findings that huge Gas deposits at Gulf of Mexico's deap Sea, similar to Eastern Mediteranean's geology, might be retrieved by modern methods...

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This obviously made of Gaza's Sea Coast a huge Energy stake. Geologists in a European/International Conference in Strasbourg since 2002, revealed to "EuroFora" that recent research (from 1998-2000), pointed towards probable big Gas findings allover from Egypt's coasts to Gaza, Israel, Lebanon and Cyprus' southern coast, from 1 to 2 km deep. And in 2006, former US President George Bush anounced that Gulf of Mexico's deep sea Gas findings (of similar geologic nature) would cover America's 50% energy needs

But it was yet unclear who might have manipulated whom, in the Middle East complex mig-mar, (added to the even larger complexity of GeoPolitical games played over Energy sources all over the World), and for what precise aims, in order to eventually provoke dramatic clashes hindering peaceful cooperation and sharing of new natural resources, (which might have facilitated a political solution).                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            .
Thus, chair of EU - Palestinian Legislative Council delegation, MEP Kyriakos Triantafyllides, focused on possibilities for a settlement through Palestinian Reconciliation, and a Government of National Unity able to agree with Israel on a renewed Peace proces, to bring the occupation towards an end, with many Arab countries ready to recognize Israel.

Echoeing EU Commissioner Michel, he also observed that EU raxpayers' money should not be spend for buildings risking to be destroyed again at a next clash. From now on, well beyond the urgent need for Humanitarian aid to arrive on the spot, the necessary Reconstruction should be  linked to steps towards Peace.

"Hamas is open to speak" and "should not be pushed to a corner", said a former Hamas' spokesman, who claimed, however, that Fatah "got nothing" after recognizing Israel, apparently preferring to keep that move as a last card to play. He also expected "from the Obama Administration to be more productive"."

Of course Hamas can play a role in the future when it stands up to a peaceful proces. But there is no justification for the rockets fired at Israel", said EU Parliament's President, Hans Gert Poettering.

Van Orden, speaking to "EuroFora" stressed that a key was to find a guarantee for Israel's "Security concerns", mainly weapons smuglling and rockets.

Abbas (as well as Hamas) supported EU playing also a Political role, and asked to "send International forces to protect our People", even if an EU-led International Peace force was not yet explicitly mentioned.

Since the 2006 Lebanon crisis, an International Peace-keeping force led by France, including a Maritime fleet headed by Germany and headquarted in Cyprus, keep an efficient presence at the surrounding area.

EU Parliament's President, Hans Gert Poettering, reminded interesting political talks he had with Syrian President Assad Jr. and others  "on July" 2008, "in Paris"' EU - Mediterranean Summit.

Meanwhile, the Diplomatic organizer of Paris' Mediterranean Summit, French President Sarkozy's former councellor, Alain Le Roy, became the new UN under-Secretary General in charge of International Peace keeping operations all over the World..

A Turkish Media attempt to push Ankara in the already complicated and dramatic scene at the former Ottoman Empire area, by exploiting a verbal exchange between Turkish prime minister Erdogan and Israeli president Peres at Davos luxurius Holiday ressort, was rather downplayed by Abbas, apparently focused more towards the Future than to the Past :

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He only mentioned "Syria - Israel" negotiations with Turkey's mediation in this regard, and agreed that Turkey could play a role "as in the Past". As for Davos, he carefully referred "to Media sources", to find out what really happened.

Strasbourg contacts, including a Middle-East Committee meeting with Abbas and others, exceptionally behind closed doors "in camera", and a Cultural spectacle on a Palestinian Poet (curiously overburdened by local "Security" obstacles), paved the way to a series of EU steps in the forthcoming weeks, including a visit by EU Parliament's President, Hans Gert Poettering in Gaza, in close coordination with EU Council and Commissioner Ferrero Waldner's moves.

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(Note on the Middle East : "EuroFora"'s current editors acknowledge that they are not fluent in Middle East politics, which are extremely complex from the Political point of view, and tragic from a Humanitarian point of view. Thus, and at least for the moment, any mention or (involuntary) ommission of facts should not be perceived by any readers as an expression of taking one or another stance. "EuroFora"s aim is not at all to take any stance, but only to find and publish Topical News on Facts able to stimulate Public Debate.)
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Former "Green-Red" German government's Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer's job at the controversial Turkish pipeline "Nabucco" was denounced as "not proper", "very bad", and "incompatible with Democracy", by the new President of EU Parliament's EuroLeft Group, German Lothar Bisky, replying to an "EuroFora" question.

For once, criticism of Joschka Fischer's doings with Turkey affecting Europe, didn't come only from the Center-Right of the political spectrum, but even from his Left side : The experienced Bisky, who has been chairing all over 1993-2009 the PDS - Die Linke party :  

- "Former Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer got involved in dealings with oil-gaz business in a foreign country, Turkey, and its controversial Nabucco pipeline. This raises questions about Democracy, also because of the well known problems of Human Rights violations in that country. Do you thing that this might be abused in order to cover up and close EU's eyes on Human Rights violations ?", "EuroFora" asked Bisky.

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- "Nabucco pipeline is (only) at the planning stage". And "there are some difficulties",  he observed from the start. But "'I don't want to get into the details of Nabucco pipeline, because I don't think that there is any point for it at the moment".
 
At any case,  "we  (EU Parliament's EuroLeft Group) strongly believe that Politicians should not get involved in the Energy Business, and all these commercial transactions", President Bisky declared on the Joschka Fiischer's affair.

- "We feel that it's something that shouldn't be done. It's not proper !"           

- "We don't think that it's compatible with Democracy either, and it gets politics into a very Bad track", Bisky went on to denounce.
                                                                                                                                                                        
- "EuroLeft  and "Die Linke" always spoke against that, saying that politicians should not get directly into the arms of private enterprises"

- "It is pretty bad if a former Minister takes a job f.ex. in a major Energy producer. So, it's an issue if a Minister who may have seen excellent opportunities, subsequently gets personally grasp of them, in very serious parts of the economy, once he has given up his (Government) job."

- "It doesn't really make politics in general look any better'", Bisky concluded.

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Earlier, this week in Strasbourg, other Journalists had also raised critical questions on former Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer's involvement in the conroversial Turkish Nabucco pipeline to the President of his own EuroParty : Kohn-Bendit of the "Greens", who, contrary to Bisky, tried to find excuses for Fischer, while criticizing his long-time partner, Schroeder for having done a similar move :

- "Shroeder was chancellor", and he "negociated" with "Russians", who gave him a job only "3 Months" after he resigned from the Government. While "Joschka Fischer", on the contrary, got a job with the controversial Turkish Nabucco pipeline only "4 Years after" he left the Government. "He didn't negociate Nabucco", so I have "no objection", Kohn Bendit claimed.

But, many Facts indicate the contrary :

Joschka Fischer was Foreign Minister in Germany from 1999 up to 2005 : I.e. from the year that EU took the controversial decision to give Turkey a "Candidate" status, until he year it started controversial "accession negotiations, (later declared "open-ended" after Sarkozy-Merkel's arrival from 2005-2007).

During that period was prepared the controversial so-called "Annan" Plan (in fact, drafted by others and attributed afterwards to the former UN SG) on Cyprus, which failed after a Popular Referendum said "No" on 2004 with a large Majoriy of 3/4 : 75%. Mainly because it was criticized for making too much concessions to the Turkish side :  Particularly by restricting Greek Cypriot Refugees' Human Right to return to their ancestral Land and/or get restitution of their Familiy Homes and private properties, usurpated by Ankara's Army since the 1974 militay invasion and continuing occupation of the northern part of Cyprus. And by weakening the Central Government, leaving to 2 "constituent States" so much powers and separate interests that more conflicts appeared inevitable, provoking the danger of a break-down in the foreseable future, with more crisis, troubles, perhaps bloodshed, etc., instead of creating an harmoniously integrated, really one federal State.

The controversial Plan was finalized on March-April 2004 at Burgenstock (Switzerland), curiously in the presence of an Envoy by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Germany, then governed by Joschka Fischer, but in the absence of a French and not even an European Union's Envoy, contrary to what was usually practiced on similar occasions in Switzerland (fex. in 1997 at Montreux, in 2000 at Geneva, etc).

Turkey notoriously exploited the failure of the "Annan" Plan in order to convince the EU to decide to start accession Negotiations on December 2004. This provoked an unprecedented series of Institutional Crisis inside the EU, shortly afterwards, when French and Dutch People rejected, 2 popular EuroReferenda by a majority "'No" vote to the EU Constitutional Treaty on 2005, aggraveted in 2004 a Majority Abstention to EU Elections, etc., followed by the recent Irish "No", etc.

"Nabucco" Gas pipeline was notoriously planned since ..2002. It follows an even earlier idea, for an Oil pipeline Baku-Ceyhun, which started to be prepared on 1999-2001 and was meanwhile recently completed.  

So, facts indicate that what is now at stake is based on decisions made during Joschka Fischer's term as former Foreign Minister, closely interested in Turkey's controversial EU-bid.

To the point that he now practically ...switched jobs with a poliician from Turkey, (the State which pays today openly Joschka Fischer), Mr. Ozdemir, who came earlier in Germany, got fast the nationality, and became EiuroMP in a few years, continuing now as head of the "Greens" in Germany, i.e. in Joschka's former job !...

Such astonishing facts risk, unfotunately, to give to German politician Lothar Bisky's criticism of  representative Democracy a topical meaning :

 - "We (EuroLeft Group) think that what is really at stake is Democracy. It's not only about Gas Pipelines or Energy sources", President Lothar Bisky went on to add in his reply to "EuroFora"'s question on Joscka Fischer's personal interests in the controversial Turkish "Nabuco" pipeline.

Such facts, "make People get more distance from Politics. ...People had had enough, and they are fed up !".

- "That's why we (EuroParliament's "EuroLeft" Group) want to strengthen Direct Democracy in Europe. Citizens should be involved in the (EU) Decision-making. In the end of the day, it's not going to help anyone if Politicians are always taking decisions, without involving Citizens. We want to give a voice to the People of Europe. They've got to have their say in the decisions that are taken. That's one of our absolutely fixed and steadfast views. We want more Direct Democracy in Europe. That's how it can become more effective and stronger", he concluded.

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