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Addressing EU-Israel confab, Lapid stresses shared ‘liberal and democratic’ values

Lazar Berman is The Times of Israel's diplomatic reporter

Prime Minister Yair Lapid takes part in a meeting of the EU-Israel Association Council via video from Jerusalem on October 3, 2022. (Kobi Gideon / GPO)
Prime Minister Yair Lapid takes part in a meeting of the EU-Israel Association Council via video from Jerusalem on October 3, 2022. (Kobi Gideon / GPO)

In his statement at the start of the EU-Israel Association Council meeting in Brussels, Prime Minister Yair Lapid stresses the “liberal and democratic values” that the sides share.

“We are all united in our desire to stop Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon,” he says. He also highlights the shared support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity, and the need to “defend freedom of expression, freedom of religion and freedom of the press around the world.”

Israel’s draft statement on the meeting, which it circulated to the EU side, emphasizes Israel’s status as a Jewish democratic state with Jerusalem as its indivisible and eternal capital, according to Lapid’s office.

In his remarks, Lapid invites the EU to become part of the Negev Forum, the regional cooperation framework launched this summer in Sde Boker.

Speaking by videoconference, Lapid emphasizes Israel’s support for the Palestinian Authority and his support for a two-state solution. “We are working with them and helping their economy develop,” he says, before adding that “the Palestinians need to put an end to terrorism and incitement.”

“Israel wants peace that will lead to security, not peace that will destabilize the Middle East,” he continues.

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