News

EU concern 
over barrier construction around village near Bethlehem

A group of diplomats from the European Union and EU Member States yesterday visited the village of Al Walaja, close to Bethlehem, to voice their concern over the humanitarian impact and political implications of the planned route of the separation barrier in the village.
 
Representatives of the Local Council briefed the delegation on the latest developments regarding to the effects of the construction of the barrier, the expansion of settlements and escalating violence by settlers.
 
The EU has been providing humanitarian support to Al Walaja through UNRWA's health and education services and also works on empowering the local community and fostering local participation via a Community Development Project with Oxfam UK, which was present at yesterday’s visit.
 
Through the EU-Oxfam project, residents have formed a community committee, which advocates for local needs and acts as an intermediary between people and the different government bodies responsible for serving them. The project targets a total of six communities in the West Bank, which suffer from lack of services, such as access to water and sanitation, roads, schools, and hospitals and experience particularly high unemployment and poverty levels.
 
The village of Walaja, 10km south of Jerusalem in the West Bank, is one of many communities in the West Bank affected by the route of the Israeli Barrier. With construction around the village having begun, residents face the threat of destroyed livelihoods, increased poverty and dependency on humanitarian aid. Some residents face the prospect of their homes soon being totally encircled.
 
The EU missions in Jerusalem and Ramallah last week issued a statement expressing concern that the barrier – when completed – would completely encircle al-Walaja, and reiterated that the barrier is illegal under international law wherever built on occupied land. (ENPI Info Centre)
 
Read more
 
Press release
 
Local EU Statement on Al Walaja (02-09-11)
 
European Commission Technical Assistance Office for the West Bank and Gaza Strip
 
EU External Action – Occupied Palestinian Territory
 
External Cooperation – Occupied Palestinian Territory
 

NEWS
Electronic thematic press packs: an indispensible information source
Online and interactive, packed with information and examples, and with plenty...
Country pages and thematic pages on the Info Centre website: just like mini-portals!
Are you looking for information on relations between the EU and one of its...
Budget support press pack – supporting reforms, supporting change
Budget support is one of the most important forms of EU assistance in the...
FEATURES
Civil society leading the way towards democracy
 Between June 2011 and June 2012 the EU donated nearly €6,500,000...
What should you do in the event of an earthquake? Find out by playing a game.
125,000 copies of a CD ROM that aims to develop preventative techniques through...
PUBLICATIONS
Regional Cooperation in the EU Neighbourhood
  A brochure highlighting the key priorities of regional cooperation in...
Projects in Action: the human face of EU Neigbourhood cooperation
Projects in Action, a magazine produced by the EU Neighbourhood Info Centre is...
EU funding Handbook
A handbook on “European Union Funding for the Neighbourhood and...
LINKS