Monday, 26 Sep 2022 - 1 of Tishri, 5783

‘Unfortunately, the European Union doesn’t acknowledge the changes that happened in the Mideast’

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Dr Ali Rashid Al Nuaimi, Chairman of the UAE Federal National Council’s Defense, Interior and Foreign Affairs Committee: ‘’ After we did the Abraham Accords, I had a meeting with one EU official. He said to me: ‘Why didn’t you tell us that you were negotiating with the Israelis about the Abraham Accords ?’ I was very open with him and I told him: Because we think that you are part of the problem and you are not part of the solution.’’

‘’Instead of encouraging the Palestinians to come to the negotiating table, the Europeans are dealing with the Palestinians the way they did in the last 70 years. My advice to the Europeans: the EU is the major funding institution to the Palestinians.They should say: look, we will fund you, we will help you but you are to come to the negotiating table. You have to stop promoting hate and incitement against Jews. You have to change your curricula, you have to change your narrative, your policy in order to open the way and prepare the Palestinian people for peace.’’

‘’Unfortunately, the European Union still deals with the Middle East region the same way they have been dealing in the last forty or fifty years,’’ deplored a senior official of  the United Arab Emirates, more than one year an a half after the signing of the Abraham Accords which normalized relations between several Arab countries and Israel.

In an interview with European Jewish Press (EJP) and Europe Israel Press Association (EIPA) in Abu Dhabi, Dr. Ali Rashid Al Nuaimi, Chairman of the UAE Federal National Council’s Defense, Interior and Foreign Affairs Committee, said the Europeans ‘’don’t acknowledge the changes that happened in the region. They don’t really understand the region, what kind of region they are dealing with now.”

‘’The region has changed. I give you one example. The UAE signed the Abraham Accords with Israel.  30 years ago you would have seen street demonstrations and many Arab capitals against these accords. Now when we did it, we saw only afew  hundreds of those supporters of Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood who called to do demonstrations. The majority of the Arabs, especially in the UAE, accepted the Accords and supported them. They saw that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.  Because they believe in a UAE within an Arab world, of diversity, coexistence and development.’’

‘’ You know after we did the Abraham Accords’’, I had a meeting with one EU official. He said to me: ‘Why didn’t you tell us that you were negotiating with the Israelis about the Abraham Accords ?’ I was very open with him and I told him: Because we think that you are part of the problem and you are not part of the solution.’’

The Emirati official stressed that the EU is still approaching the conflict with the same narrative.

He added, ‘’What we need now actually is to pave the way for peace and to encourage the Palestinians to come to the negotiating table.’’

‘’Instead of doing this, the Europeans are dealing with the Palestinians the way they did in the last 70 years. My advice to the Europeans: the EU is the major funding institution to the Palestinians. They should say : look, we will fund you, we will help you but you are to come to the negotiating table. You have to stop promoting hate and incitement against Jews. You have to change your curricula, you have to change your narrative, your policy in order to open the way and prepare the Palestinian people for peace.’’

He continued, ‘’Peace is not a paper that you will sign. This is something you need to prepare the new generation and work for it. This is exactly what we did in the UAE because in the last 30 years in our education system, in our religious narratives, we promoted coexistence, acceptance of others, respect, tolerance….This is not happening in the Palestinian schools, in the refugees camps, in the West Bank, Gaza, Jordan or Lebanon or Syria… No, it is still a hate narrative, incitement and this is where the EU actually can and should play a role.’’

‘’If the EU doesn’t do it,  we will go nowhere in the issue of getting the Palestinians to the negotiating table. We have to bring them. They have to negotiate for their rights. We can’t negotiate on their behalf,’’ he concluded.

 

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