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Re-negotiating the Terms of EU-Israel Partnership: Normative Power and International Law

In July the European Commission published “guidelines on the eligibility of Israeli entities and their activities in the territories occupied by Israel since June 1967 for grants, prizes and financial instruments funded by the EU from 2014 onwards.” This step has been variously described as a ‘political earthquake’, a sanction targeting Israeli settlements and settlement policies, and a confrontational move to save the two-State solution and the Middle East Peace Process from final collapse. But what precisely is taking place and how did we get here? What are the likely political consequences? The presentation will outline the actual processes that have actually driven EU's production of these guidelines. In this light it will examine the role of the EU as a normative power striving to respect international law and comply with its own law while intensifying EU-Israel relations.

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Event Details

Speaker: Charles Shamas, Mattin Group
Dr Federica Bicchi, LSE
Discussant: Daniel Levy, ECFR
Date: Monday 11 November 2013
Time: 16.30-18.00
Location: Room 2.06, New Academic Building, LSE
Attendance: This event is free and open to all on a first come first served basis



Charles Shamas is a senior partner with the Mattin Group. His human rights practice is focused on activating processes of third party enforcement through the coordinated application of international law, EU law and national law. Mr. Shamas has led numerous technical, investigative and policy research projects commissioned by the World Bank, the United Nations Special Coordinator’s Office, the European Commission, the UK and Netherlands governments and European and Euro-Mediterranean networks of non-governmental organisations. 

Since 1995 he has led a dialogue with the European Commission, the European Parliament and member states examining the problems that have arisen from Israel’s application of the EU-Israel Association Agreement to the territories it occupied since 1967 and possible solutions. More recently his work has been focused on promoting a multi-year process to rectify shortcomings in the EU’s earlier approach to constructing its privileged engagements with Israel.  His work focuses on promoting action at EU level to ensure that legislation is implemented consistently with the EU’s international law-based policies, and that EU-Israel dealings respect the EU’s positions and commitments regarding the non-recognition of Israel’s exercise of sovereign authorities over the territories occupied since 1967. 

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