At the EU-Israel Association Council, created to strenghteh the relations between the two sides, the EU delegation will be led by EU foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell and the Israeli delegation by Prime Minister Yair Lapid, who is also Foreign Minister.
The EU-Israel Association Council will meet Monday in Brussels, the EU announced.
It will be the first meeting in a decade of this high-level dialogue body between Israel and the EU which was created to strengthen relations between the two sides.
The EU delegation will be led by EU’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs chief Josep Borrell and the Israeli delegation by Prime Minister Yair Lapid, who is also Foreign Minister.
According to an EU statement, the Association Council ‘’will offer an opportunity for wide-ranging discussions on EU-Israel bilateral relations, against the backdrop of global challenges such as Russia’s military aggression against Ukraine, the global energy crisis and rising food insecurity.’’
‘’The discussion will focus on issues such as trade, climate change, energy, science and technology, culture, the respect for human rights and democratic principles, freedom of religion as well as the fight against antisemitism,’’ the EU said.
The two sides will discuss global and regional issues of shared interest and concern, in particular the Middle East Peace Proces ‘’where the EU hopes to build on the momentum generated at the UN General Assembly,’’ a reference to Prime Minister Lapid’s speech at the UN where he endorsed a two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians.
Following the speech, Josep Borrell welcomed Lapid’s support for a peace agreement based on two states for two peoples, saying that ‘’a negotiated two state solution is the best way to ensure a just and lasting peace, security and prosperity for both Israel and Palestine.’’ He said that he would ‘’build on this important commitment at the upcoming EU-Israel Association Council.’’
At this occasion, the EU reaffirmed its position which is a ”commitment to a just and comprehensive resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, based on the two state solution, with the State of Israel and an independent, democratic, contiguous, sovereign, and viable State of Palestine, living side by side in peace and security and mutual recognition, and with Jerusalem serving as the future capital of both states.’’
The 27 EU Foreign Ministers agreed last July to hold the EU-Israel Association Council which has not met since 2012 due to disagreements on the Israeli-Palestinian issue.
The Association Council meeting will take place less than a month before Israel holds elections on November 1.