New EU guidelines limit Israel funding

FILE - In this Sept. 20, 2010 aerial file photo, taken through the window of an airplane, the West Bank Jewish settlement of Ariel is seen. From 2014, Israeli authorities must guarantee that all EU funding and cooperation projects are conducted within Israel's pre-1967 border and not in east Jerusalem, the West Bank or Golan Heights. A senior Israeli official is condemned the European Union's new directive banning EU dealings with settlements as "worrying" and counterproductive to peace talks. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit, File)
FILE - In this Sept. 20, 2010 aerial file photo, taken through the window of an airplane, the West Bank Jewish settlement of Ariel is seen. From 2014, Israeli authorities must guarantee that all EU funding and cooperation projects are conducted within Israel's pre-1967 border and not in east Jerusalem, the West Bank or Golan Heights. A senior Israeli official is condemned the European Union's new directive banning EU dealings with settlements as "worrying" and counterproductive to peace talks. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit, File)

PARIS (AP) — The European Union has published new guidelines explicitly banning any EU funding of Israeli institutions operating in territories occupied since the 1967 Mideast war, amid vigorous Israeli objections.

The EU holds that Jewish settlements in territories such as the West Bank and east Jerusalem are illegal. The Palestinians want some of those territories for their hoped-for state.

After EU officials announced plans this week for the new guidelines, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke with several European leaders to express his opposition.

EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said the document released Friday “is meant to clarify the EU’s position” and is not meant to harm efforts toward Mideast peace. The new rules come into force Jan. 1. Very little EU funding currently goes to Israeli bodies in occupied territories.

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