The Daily Press Briefing

Statements made by
the Ministry for Europe
and Foreign Affairs

Paris - June 3, 2019
In this issue:

◢  Israel / Palestinian Territories – Settlement activity (May 30, 2019)

◢  Sudan (June 3, 2019)

◢  Migration – European Union

Israel / Palestinian Territories – Settlement activity (May 30, 2019)

The Israeli authorities published several tenders on May 30 for the construction of more than 800 homes in settlements in East Jerusalem.

France condemns this decision in the troubling context of accelerating settlement activity in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Settlement activity is contrary to international law, as reaffirmed by UNSCR 2334. It contributes to exacerbating tensions on the ground and undermines the conditions for a just and lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians, based on the two-state solution.

France calls on the Israeli authorities to reverse this decision and to abandon any plans that may jeopardize the possibility of a two-state solution.

Sudan (June 3, 2019)

France condemns the violence perpetrated over the last few days in Sudan in the crackdown on demonstrations. It calls for the perpetrators of this violence to be brought to justice.

France calls for the continuation of dialogue between the Transitional Military Council and the opposition in order to swiftly find an inclusive agreement on the transitional institutions.

It urges all Sudanese parties to refrain from any violent acts that could jeopardize the peaceful transition to which the Sudanese people aspire.

Migration – European Union

According to a document filed in the International Criminal Court on Monday, France is one of several countries accused of being responsible for a European migration policy that resulted in crimes against humanity: More than 40,000 people have been intercepted in the Mediterranean and taken to detention camps or torture houses under this policy.

Citing public EU documents, statements by the French President, German Chancellor and other European high officials, the document alleges that EU leaders were knowingly responsible for deaths at sea and on land, as well as the widespread rape and torture committed by members of the Libyan Coast Guard, funded and trained by European taxpayers. How does the Ministry respond to these accusations?

We learned via the press of the NGOs’ intention to file such a document in the International Criminal Court.

This accusation is meaningless and has no legal grounds.

France has worked hard to combat human trafficking and smugglers. At France’s initiative and through the efforts of Jean-Yves Le Drian, in June 2018 the UN Security Council imposed individual sanctions on people involved in human trafficking and migrant trafficking in Libya. It is working with the countries of origin and transit to dismantle illegal channels and networks of smugglers, and to attack their funding arrangements.

These measures reflect President Macron’s goal of improving the international response to the migratory crisis in conjunction with our UN, EU and African Union partners, and in line with the meetings of heads of state and government held in Paris in August 2017 and Abidjan in November 2017.

It is also committed to providing a durable European response to the migration challenge based on the principles of responsibility and solidarity, especially as regards the right to asylum. Within the European framework, France has taken in individuals rescued at sea and in need of protection.

France in the
United States
Embassy of France in Washington, D.C.
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