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Grape vines in the Golan Heights
Photo: Rina Nagila
EU to use legal loophole to ban settlement goods
Germany's Der Spiegel says European Union to take effort to ban products made in West Bank, Golan Heights further by using import laws' loophole

Germany's German Der Spiegel magazine claimed Monday that Israeli producers evade European Union legislation and falsely mark products made in the Golan Heights and the West Bank as "made in Israel."

 

The report cited EU regulation that say that certain products, such as wine from the Golan Heights, must be marked with their exact place of production, in order to adhere with various European country's preference not to import or sell products made in what Brussels deems as "illegal settlement."

 

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But in a shop in the city of Cologne, Germany, wines from the Golan Heights are sold with labels reading "Made in Israel," the report stated.

 

Der Spiegel pointed out that these products can be banned due to false labeling, but so far the regulations have not been fully enforced.

 

The international community does not recognize the West Bank and Golan Heights as part of Israel.

 

Another EU legislation rules that the importing country is required to verify the imported product's source, but the report found that the German Ministry of Agriculture suffices with the producer's statement.

 

According to the article, the volume of Israeli exports from the Golan Heights and Judea and Samaria stands at about €220 million. 

 

The issue of boycotting settlements' products has been often debated. A report in the Independent revealed that in July 2012 European governments, including Britain's, received a legal opinion from a prominent international legal firm, according to which the boycott is within their countries rights'.

 

In September 2012 a senior Greek diplomat said that the EU is considering a ban on importing settlements' products.

 

 

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