Saturday, August 15, 2009


First of all, I would like to apologize for not updating this blog for almost a month.
I was overwhelmed with jobs on hand as well as welcoming a new member in my nucleus family

Heated debates in chedet has been a norm for public in expressing their thoughts.
We are fortunate to have Hanan from the land of conflict to share with us his perspective.
And Thanks Hanan for being a follower in this blog too.

I selectively pick Hanan's response below to share with you from chedet's latest
Gaza post.
My personal favourite:

Brutality is not how the Israeli soldiers treated the people on that boat but
how prisoners are beaten to death in the Malaysian police stations under
detention. Before talking about brutality, it is better to come with clean hands
to the meal.

Asslamualaikum dear Dr. Mahathir and friends.
I would like to comment on that post. I may be interpreted a bit “Sarcastic” and too sharp but it was done in the intention to put a more balanced picture of the description of Dr. Mahathir. Yes, you must contribute and donate for the poor Palestinian people and do it generously. I like the idea but somehow dislike the propaganda that encourages that idea.

I' m considering to establish a blog which will be called “Friendship prior Peace”. If all people will accept that approach then peace is not an issue anymore and criminalizing war will be passé. Once it will be established I’ll let you know and welcome you to participate, even write your own articles and expressions.
1. We all remember the brutal Israeli attacks against Gaza last year. Many of us were outraged by the killings of some 1,300 Gazan Palestinian, men, women, the disabled, the children, the sick and the maimed. Hospitals and schools were destroyed.

But you tend to forget or ignore easily what those Gazans did prior the massive attack on them. You forgot the massive of what you call “poppet rocket” – Qassams launching against innocent civilians, synagogues and schools. Suicide bombers blasting in malls, busses and restaurants.
2. The condemnation of this brutal assaults had forced the Israelis to stop the massive retaliation against alleged Hamas rocket attacks against Israel.

Why do you try to humanize the rocket attacks on Israel and define them improper as “alleged”. You are purely distorting history and telling half truth like you always did.
3. Many of the rich countries had pledged billions in aid for the rebuilding of Gaza.

Does mean pledging that they will give the money to rebuild “Hamastan”? Is Gaza a place of normal people ruled by their own Islamic extremists? Where are the oil rich Muslim countries? They sit with their fat bellies covered with gold, jewelry and diamonds, wearing Breitling watches, driving 10 RR cars, sleeping on pure silk sheets and sailing 5 yachts. Do they care for their own brothers?
4. After that, things became quiet. There was hardly any report in the press on what was happening. I suppose most people assume that the reconstruction of Gaza was proceeding apace.

The reconstruction of the Qassam rockets is probably proceeding apace. Engineering work forces are focused on destruction instead of rebuilding.
5. But the reality is far different. The Egyptians limited the medicine and the building materials from entering Gaza from its territory. The sea is blockaded illegally by the Israelis. The people of Gaza have literally been made prisoners by these actions.

You are a very good friend of the Egyptians, even simulated there a trial and judged Ariel Sharon for his crimes. So why aren’t you meeting with president Mubarak in order to understand his limited transition of materials to Gaza and maybe you can convince him to be more generous, more human to his own brothers as you are so generous from thousands miles away. Who says that the sea blockade is illegal? Who gave you the job to judge what means legal or illegal? Is it legal to hold in prison an Israeli soldier named Gilad Shalit for more than 3 years without letting the Red Cross representative to visit him regularly? Is this legal? Why can’t you say something about that? The Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons are enjoying TV with their all favorite channels, enjoy the Zionist Open University academic learning free of charge and of course visits of their families from time to time. What Israel is doing to the Palestinian prisoners is a crime but what Hamas is doing to the Israeli single prisoner is legal, human and generous, following the Islam.
6. The Free Gaza Movement led by Huwaida Arraf was set up in order to send needed supplies to beleaguered Gaza. But after five small boats were successful in delivering much need supplies, the Israeli navy began to intercept them and forcing them to abort their humanitarian aid.

This is really a funny thing. You are pulling your own leg. You say “5 small boats” are to feed 1.5 million Gazans. You really believe that this is the absolute possibility to solve the feeding problem. Those 5 boats are not more than a political show more to harm Israel than to help the Gazans. And you, when you can join that cruel dance party, you just join the ring of dancers.
7. One small boat with a number of Palestinians, Arabs, European and American (a U.S. Congresswoman) was rammed by Israeli warships. The people in the boat, all civilians were thrown into the sea. Luckily they survived.

Just to be polite and respectful to you among your fans I will not call it what I need to call it. I’ll call it as a sentence with an attribute of non fully truth. If they were thrown into the sea (far from the shore), did you ask yourself how did they survive if the Israeli navy was there? They brainwashed you and you let them wash your brain and now you are washing the brains of your own fans. That simple question is missing which you didn’t ask them because you didn’t want to ask them since I think you are wise enough to ask it. Aren’t you equal to 7 Jewish brains (like zul81 commented in one of his comments)?
8. Recently another little boat, loaded with food, medicine, stationery for school use and toys, with 25 unarmed civilians including a Nobel Peace Laureate from Ireland and the American women candidate for presidency of the U.S. was fired at by Israeli commandos, who then boarded the boat, giving rough treatment to the people on board.

Once again, to be polite, it is a partial truth. That boat was warned far away through the radio not to attempt to enter the limited waters. That boat captain ignored the warning of the INS (Israeli Navy ship). Since that was the situation, it is possible that the INS fired into the air far from the boat in order to change its direction and revert. But the boat was consistent to continue so there was no other possibility but to send the soldiers on board in order to stop its voyage. Brutality is a matter of interpretation. Brutality is not how the Israeli soldiers treated the people on that boat but how prisoners are beaten to death in the Malaysian police stations under detention. Before talking about brutality, it is better to come with clean hands to the meal.

9. Repeated shouts on the loudhailer that there were only unarmed civilians and the boat carried no arm failed to stop the commandos. The boat was steered by the commandos to an Israeli port and the people on board were thrown into Israeli jails.

Hahaha, what are you expecting to do with someone who violated the warning? Would you expect to fetch him to a luxury hotel with a limo?
10. The people of the Free Gaza Movement have now been released. They are determined to carry on sailing from Cyprus to Gaza to bring relief.

They may try.
11. Winter is coming and it will be bitterly cold in Gaza. A great number of the Gazans whose houses were destroyed by the Israelis have no shelter and would suffer terribly in the winter.

I agree, it will be cold in the winter. Many houses were destroyed.
12. Modern civilization is supposedly very concerned about human rights. It is only right that we care for those heroes and heroines who are standing up to oppressive Governments.

Which civilization or in particular, a single Muslim, is concerned about the human rights of the Israeli prisoner of war Gilad Shalit? Are you?, Is it the Iranian clown president? Any Malaysian?........Silence……

13. But shouldn't we also be concerned and caring for the 1½ million people of Gaza, who had lost 1,300 fellow inhabitants, whose houses, schools and hospitals have been destroyed, who do not have water or sanitary facilities, who will be without shelter from the coming winter.

Are you concerned about the darkness of the underground bunker for more than 3 years and the explosive belt that Gilad Shalit is wearing and detained? Are you urging your Hamas brothers to let the Red Cross representative to visit him. Who is not human don’t deserve any human treatment.
14. It is sad that Governments who had pledged aid have so readily allowed the Israelis to blockade Gaza. It is disgusting that Israel can break international laws with impunity.

If Israel breaks the international laws, why aren’t you charging Israel in the international court? Maybe you should charge Israel in a Sharia court. Then I know what will be the punishment – I’ll not be any more on this blog. But before you charge Israel for that you need to charge Hamas as well for breaking international law. Done a deal?
15. I went to Cyprus to meet these brave members of the Free Gaza Movement. I was shocked at how tiny was the only fishing boat that they still have for future trips to Gaza.

And you are so naive to believe that the fishing boat can feed all Gazans? This is not a fishing boat but a political phishing boat against Israel and not to aid the Gazans.
16. I had been sailing in a much bigger yacht and I know how rough was the sea. Yet 25 people dare to sail in this tiny boat, sleeping on the open deck, being seasick, being without proper food, and being made to face Israeli attacks. We really live in an uncivilized world where the fate of one or two people, useful for condemning certain Governments are constantly played up, yet the suffering, the freedom of 1½ million Gazans are ignored. I admire then Gazans whose main concern is for their right to be a free people, free that is from Israeli oppression, supported by the rich people who talk a lot about human rights and freedom.

If they were so concerned about carrying aid to Gaza, they could carry about 2000Kg more if just a crew of 5 people could sail the boat instead of 25. I wonder what weight can such a bout contain that 2000Kg of aid is not so valuable for the “starving” Gazans. You just pulled your leg once again. That phishing boat is a political tool not an aiding tool.
17. I don't think I would be able to endure the kind of discomfort and dangers faced by the activists of the Free Gaza Movement. All I can do is to give moral support to them.

And you really give them your support. I cannot take that credit from you. Please keep supporting them.
18. Malaysians who wish to do so may volunteer to sail with these intrepid people. But if they cannot, then they can contribute towards their need to buy a bigger boat as no one would rent boats to them.

I would suggest to buy a petrol tanker ship with a huge volume where you can place all their needs in one turn. Also you should ask the Malaysian navy ships to escort them safely to Gaza so the Israeli Navy cannot interfere and finally the blockade will break. Maybe such a tanker is available in Saudi Arabia and it would be good to ask the Saudi King to hire the tanker for a few weeks (of course free of charge, a couple of diamonds value is not a big deal for the brothers). And the escorting of the Malaysian Navy ships shouldn’t be a problem at all since it is just “home business”.
19. The PGPO (Perdana Global Peace Organisation) would like to appeal for donations in aid of the Free Gaza Movement members to purchase a small ship to carry cement and building materials apart from medicine and food etc.

You really believe that a small ship can handle a volume of cement needed to rebuild the demolished houses? Have you ever saw the size of a 50Kg sack of cement and how many of them is required for the rebuilding? The small ship will not be able to carry much and it may take even 10 years of voyage to transfer the amount of cement. Try to think about the tanker ship. Keep in mind the relatively heavy cement which is 3.1 times heavier than water in the same volume.
20. All contributions by cheque can be issued to: KLFCW (Gaza Fund). KLFCW stands for the Kuala Lumpur Foundation to Criminalise War. Cash contributions can be channeled to KLFCW Maybank Account: 5123 3430 6634.

From reading my comments you may think that I’m against the donation campaign. I’m not. You should help the Gazans as much as you can but it should be done with truth and not half truth propaganda. I wish you great success with the donation for your brothers who deserve to live like human beings but they should also behave like human beings. Please don’t forget the banner to free Gilad Shalit (just the banner, donations are not required at the moment just some sunlight) on your blog header.


Hanan, Jewish,


Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Europe raises pressure on Israel to stop settlements (Reuters)

More pressures to halt the settlement expansion but will this help the Peace process?
Who knows? But we just have to start this case IS side. Will Ne agrees? Guess not...then what?

Europe raises pressure on Israel to stop settlements (Reuters)

By Allyn Fisher-Ilan
JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Germany, France and EU president Sweden on Tuesday joined Western nations pressing Israel to stop building settlements in East Jerusalem and the West Bank under a U.S.-led effort to resume stalled peace talks.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has resisted international calls to freeze building in occupied territory, seemed to show a sign of flexibility as a newspaper reported a secret plan to remove two dozen unauthorized settler outposts.

Israel has long pledged to dismantle hilltop outposts that it never approved, but has continued building larger settlements in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, land it captured in a 1967 war, and where Palestinians want to build a future state.

Western-backed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has said he would not resume peace talks with Israel, stalled since Israel elected Netanyahu, a right-wing settler champion in February, unless all settlement construction stopped.

In Berlin, Ruprecht Polenz, a senior member of German Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservative party, was quoted as saying Israel ran the risk "of gradually committing suicide as a democratic state" if it did not stop the construction.

Polenz, head of the German parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee, further told the Rheinische Post daily that "Israel is overlooking the fact that neither Palestinians nor Arab states will agree to a solution without East Jerusalem."

The French Foreign Ministry summoned Israel's ambassador, Daniel Shek, in Paris, to protest against a planned Israeli housing project for East Jerusalem, which Israel considers part of its capital and which Palestinians also seek to make their capital.

Israel annexed East Jerusalem shortly after its capture, in a move never recognized internationally.

European Union president Sweden urged from Stockholm that Israel refrain from demolishing homes in East Jerusalem where thousands are threatened with displacement.

Jerusalem has emerged as a focal point of the settlement controversy since Israeli officials accused the U.S. State Department on Sunday of telling Israel's ambassador to Washington, Michael Oren, Israel should suspend plans to build about 20 housing units in the city's eastern sector.

The United States has never confirmed it made this demand, but Netanyahu rejected it in televised remarks to his cabinet, a move analysts saw as capitalizing on broad popular support in the country for Israel's continued control of the disputed city.

Israel shut a hotel fair in East Jerusalem in the latest of several Palestinian cultural events it has disrupted in recent months saying an interim peace deal permits it to bar the Palestinian government from holding events in the city.

"They want us to leave Jerusalem, but we will not," Rafiq al-Husseini, an aide to Abbas, said.

Neither Netanyahu's office nor the Israeli army would comment on a report in the respected Haaretz daily that the military was preparing to "forcibly evacuate 23 illegal outposts in one day," in a plan drawn up with Netanyahu's knowledge.

The same Haaretz columnist disclosed plans to remove troops and Jewish settlers from the Gaza Strip before that pullout occurred in 2005.

Separately, a report by the Macro Center of the Israeli European Policy Network said settlements were receiving a larger share of government funding than municipalities inside Israel, and the settler population was also growing three times as fast.

"While Israeli municipalities as a whole receive 34.7 percent of their income from (the government) and obtain another 64.3 percent from their own income, settlement municipalities obtain 57 percent from the (government) and only 42.8 percent from their own income," the report said.

(Additional reporting by Madeline Chambers in Berlin, Niklas Pollard in Stockholm, Mohammed Assadi in Ramallah, and Douglas Hamilton and Ali Sawafta in Jerusalem)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Are Israeli courts staffed by Nazi judges? (PIC)

Who to trust? What to believe?
It is all superficial but wasted sacrifices. Word is against word & it can be further manipulated by the color of your skin. This is the reality...

Are Israeli courts staffed by Nazi judges? (PIC)

By Khalid Amayreh in the West Bank
Just as anti-Semitism became official policy in Germany in the mid 1930s, it is seems hostility toward Arabs, including Israel’s own 1.5 million Palestinian citizens, is becoming a de facto official policy of the Israeli state.

This ominous orientation is being constantly promoted by a number of manifestly racist cabinet ministers and Knesset members who declare openly that their aim is to make everyone in Israel “submit to the Jewish nature of the state.”

The brash racism is now permeating through the entire apparatus of the Jewish state, from the police, to the justice system, to the army, to the educational system and, of course, the media.

Last week, Israeli courts showed off their racist credentials when two Israeli settlers, a murderer and a would-be murderer were acquitted of murdering a Palestinian and seriously wounding two others.

In the first case, a West Jerusalem judge acquitted a Jewish settler named Ze’ev Braude who had shot and seriously injured two unarmed Palestinians in al-Khalil ( Hebron ) several months ago.

The settler was caught on video shooting at the two Palestinians who were pleading to Israeli troops to stop rampaging settlers from attacking their homes and families. The settlers were vandalizing Arab property and trying to set homes on fire in protest against the evacuation by the army of Jewish squatters who had seized an Arab building a few years earlier.

Braude’s lawyer reportedly asked for “classified information” which he said would help clear his client of any wrongdoing. However, instead of meeting the lawyer’s request, the attorney-general decided to drop all charges against Braude. Thus the would-be killer, who had shot and seriously injured two innocent Palestinians, was effectively declared innocent.

In the second case, a Jewish farmer by the name of Shai Dromi was acquitted of manslaughter by a Bir al Saba’a (Beer Shiva) court despite damning evidence indicting him.

In 2007, Dromi shot and killed a Bedouin “infiltrator,” claiming that he was trying to steal his livestock.

Racist system

One doesn’t have to be a great expert on Israel to be able to describe the Israeli justice system as inherently racist, being based on religious-ethno centricism.

Indeed, had the victims been Jewish, there is not the slightest doubt that the perpetrators would have been given harsh prison sentences, without a chance for parole for decades.

However, in a state that murders innocent children at will “for self-defense” and lies as often as it breathes, this type of justice ought to be viewed as being within the normal order of things.

Indeed, Israel itself, one might argue perfectly rightly, is a crime against humanity, having been created on the ruins of another people, the Palestinians.

Hence, it is only “natural” and “normal” that Israeli courts would deal with utmost flaccidity and utter leniency with Jewish perpetrators of crimes as long as the victim is not a member of the “holy tribe.”

This tradition goes back to the establishment of Israel more than 62 years when a given Jewish murderer of a Palestinian was fined a dime on the ground that the life of a non-Jew wasn’t worth more than a dime.

A few years ago, an Israeli soldier who was serving in southern Gaza murdered a Palestinian school child, Iman al Hums, as she was going to school.

The soldier, dubbed Captain R. shot and seriously wounded the young girl, and as he saw her agonize and wallow in pain, he walked toward her, empting an entire magazine of bullets into her tender body to make sure that she was dead and didn’t pose a threat to his life.

The practice is still widely practiced in the Israeli army and is known as “verifying the kill.”

The reaction of the Israeli justice system to this event was very telling, indeed.

For instead of prosecuting and punishing the murderer, the Israeli army actually awarded him thousands of dollars in damages he claimed he deserved because his reputation was tarnished by the media.

Westerners, especially North Americans, who have been consuming Zionist lies for decades may be prompted to think that the above-mentioned cases are an aberration and in no way represent Israel’s general behaviors.

However, the truth, which Israel and her supporters strive to hide from the eyes of the world, is that the Israeli justice system is inherently and profoundly racist, to put it mildly, especially when non-Jews, particularly Palestinians, are involved.

In recent years, hundreds of settler judges and others affiliated with extremist terrorist Jewish groups, such as the Kahana group, Gush Emunim and Chabad infiltrated the Israeli justice system.

These people are indoctrinated in the Nazi-like ideology that Jews are genetically and humanly superior than non-Jews and that Jewish lives are worth more than non-Jewish lives.

Hence, when a Jew and a non-Jew appear in court, the Jewish judge feels obliged to take all these considerations into account and refrain, as much as possible, from passing stiff punishments against Jewish defendants.

This is often done by meticulously searching for or even concocting extenuating circumstances, or by finding a procedural loophole, that would make the judge seriously reduce the proscribed punishment for the Jewish defendant or acquit him of any wrongdoing.

Israel claims to be a western country, a democracy and a state where the rule of law is upheld.

Well, this trinity of lies should be obvious for anyone who has had the opportunity to know Israel first-hand.

But, there is always a certain level of “veracity” in these claims. In Israel , the rule of law is indeed upheld just as the rule of law was also upheld in Nazi Germany .

But the question remains, what laws are exactly being upheld?

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Netanyahu rejects US calls to halt east J'lem project (Ynetnews)

Both sides are speaking their own terms. Up to date, there is no official terms coming from the Pal side as part of Peace process. Is the call to halt J'lem project merely from US as the Peace negotiator?

Netanyahu rejects US calls to halt east J'lem project (Ynetnews)

Prime Minister responds to US State Department demands to halt construction of
hotel in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood; says 'Our sovereignty in Jerusalem is
indisputable... I wish to make this clear - the united Jerusalem is the capital
of the Jewish people in the State of Israel'
The US has demanded that Israel suspend a planned project in east Jerusalem, senior Israeli officials said Sunday - the latest sign of a deepening conflict between the two allies over Israeli settlements.

The officials confirmed that Israel's ambassador to the US, Michael Oren, was summoned to the State Department over the weekend and told that the project being developed by American millionaire Irving Moskowitz should not go ahead.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss with the media diplomatic flaps with the US. Spokesmen for the US Embassy and the Jerusalem municipality had no comment.

The international community considers Jewish neighborhoods in east Jerusalem to be settlements and an obstacle to Israeli-Palestinian peacemaking.

Israel Radio and Army Radio reported Sunday that the US has summoned Oren and demanded that planning approval for the project be revoked,

The project is being developed by American millionaire Irving Moskowitz and is near Israel's national police headquarters. The radio reports said Israeli planning authorities have approved the project.

In response to the demands Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said at the start of Sunday's cabinet meeting, "Our sovereignty in Jerusalem is indisputable. We can't agree to such a demand in east Jerusalem."

"I wish to make this clear – the united Jerusalem is the capital of the Jewish people in the State of Israel," he added.

The project in question is the construction of the Shepherd Hotel in the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah.

"Israel is building in Jerusalem and will build in the future. The Israeli enforcement and planning bodies are in charge of this. This is private land. Up until now, there has been no criticism of Israel in Washington over construction in Jerusalem," a top government source said.

Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman also commented on the demand, calling it "unthinkable".

"There are many Arab families that build homes in the Neve Yaakov and French Hill neighborhoods. I have never heard any remarks on this matter, neither from the United States, nor from Europe," he said.

"This is not an isolated distant Palestinian neighborhood. Should we of all people discriminate against Jews? This is unthinkable," he added.

'US demands prove dangers of settlement talks'
However, other sources said it would be unwise to get into a dispute with the Americans over the matter at such a sensitive time.

One source said, "It would be best if all involved, including the Jerusalem Municipality, demonstrate restrain in order to find an educated solution that is acceptable to all parties in the settlement issue."

Minister of Information and Diaspora Yuli Edelstein said such a demand to halt the construction of a project just meters from the Hebrew University "proves how dangerous it is to get dragged into talks of a settlement freeze".

"Such talks will lead to a demand to completely freeze our lives in the entire State of Israel," he added.

MK Ofir Akunis, head of the Likud's response team said, "There is a broad consensus in the Israeli public around Jerusalem's unity as the eternal capital of Israel.

"All countries of the world should understand that attempts to endanger Jerusalem's unity and Israel's sovereignty in it, will be rejected immediately."

Science and Technology Minister Daniel Hershkowitz said the demand "proves that whoever demands a settlement freeze in Judea and Samaria will eventually also demand construction be frozen in the government offices in Sheikh Jarrah.

"I invite the US administration representatives to visit my office in Sheikh Jarrah, so they can witness Israel's sovereignty in the united Jerusalem".

Earlier Sunday it was reported that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's scheduled meeting with US Mideast envoy George Mitchell was postponed at least until the end of the month.

Another meeting between the two, which was set to take place in Paris last month, was also cancelled.

Mitchell was originally due to arrive in Israel on Sunday and later hold meetings with senior Palestinian officials in Ramallah. Jerusalem did not state the official reason for the delay, but some officials suspect it relates to the fact that the Netanyahu and Obama administrations have yet to resolve their differences on the issue of settlement expansion in the West Bank.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

EU apologizes for statements against settlements (Ynetnews)

Looks like the news that was reported yesterday was purely fiction. Today's post is showing US still stick with his original stand.

EU apologizes for statements against settlements (Ynetnews)
Foreign Ministry says satisfied after EU apologizes for statement made by one of its officials in which he claimed European taxes were paying for damage caused by settlements. Meanwhile US State Department clarifies administration's position remains unchanged

Roni Sofer Published: 07.09.09, 01:27 / Israel News

US: No change in policy
But while the confrontation on the European front has abated – the US on Wednesday reiterated its demand to see a complete freeze on settlement construction.

State Department spokesman Ian Kelly dismissed a report on Wednesday that it had agreed to let Israel build about 2,500 housing units already under construction in West Bank settlements.

"That report in that Israeli media outlet is inaccurate," said after the Maariv newspaper reported that Minister Barak and US envoy George Mitchell had struck such a deal.

Under the arrangement reached in London on Monday, Maariv reported, Israel would be allowed to continue work on about 700 buildings already under construction on the occupied West Bank, or about 2,500 units.

But Kelly said "the bottom line" for US President Barack Obama's administration has not changed, "that all parties in the region have to honor their obligations.

"And you know what our position is regarding settlements... This activity has to stop. This is laid out in the roadmap. So the reports are inaccurate," Kelly said.

He added that Mitchell plans to travel to Israel soon to continue his discussions, adding that his talks with Barak on Monday had been "good, productive." He gave no dates for the planned visit.
The European Union Commission apologized to Israel's Ambassador to the Union, Ron Kuriel, over statements it made earlier this week claiming that the settlement policy was stifling the Palestinian economy and increasing Palestinian dependence on foreign aid – and therefore was costing European citizens in taxes.

The apology was issued after EU Ambassador to Israel Ramiro Cibrian-Uzal was reprimanded by Deputy Director of the Foreign Ministry Rafi Barak. A senior Commission official told Ambassador Kuriel that the statement released by the head of Operations at the European Commission's office in east Jerusalem

The Foreign Ministry said in response that it was satisfied was the apology.

Ambassador Kuriel stressed the severity with which Israel sees Dickinson's statement, saying that the issue was not only the lack of diplomatic manners but also the clear deviation from the Commission's stated role, "which is to coordinate aid with the Palestinians, not arrogantly criticize Israel."

Kuriel was assured that an official communiqué had been issued to clarify that the earlier statement did not reflect the Commission's position.

The original statement caused a storm in Israel and Europe after it was released last Monday. According to the statement, the Commission believes Israel's settlement policy is strangling the Palestinian economy and makes the Palestinian government more dependent on foreign aid – the burden of which falls on the European taxpayer. The European Union is one of the largest donors to the Palestinian Authority.

According to the EU, expropriation of fertile land for Israeli settlements, roads that serve only settlers, and West Bank checkpoints help constrain Palestinian economic growth and make the Palestinian government more dependent on aid.

Defense Minister Ehud Barak called the Commission out for ignoring a recent World Bank report indicating an improvement in the Palestinian economy. "The Mideast Quartet (US, Russia, EU and the UN) welcomed Israel's plans to improve the Palestinian economy, and recognizes Israel's right to security," the Defense Ministry said.

"Thanks to the cooperation between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, 140 (West Bank) roadblocks have been removed over the past few months. These measures may double the growth rate of the Palestinian economy from 5 to 10%. Unfortunately, all of these details were omitted from the European Commission's statement."