In responding to the recent crisis in Israel and Palestine, European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen has violated the European Union‘s legal framework and disregarded basic moral decency. While condemning attacks on civilians in Israel, she has supported the sealing off of civilians in Gaza from water, food and electricity and the bombing of the people of Gaza under the guise of “defence”. This unilateral action disregards international law and the democratic mandate of EU member states.
The president of the European Commission thus disregards:
the democratic mandate of EU member states,
appropriate ethical behaviour,
the necessary diplomatic prudence.
We, the undersigned, demand her immediate resignation.
1. unilateral stance without a mandate
Ursula von der Leyen has supported the sealing off of civilians in Gaza from water, food and electricity and the bombing of Gaza under the guise of “defence” without a mandate from EU member states.
2. ignoring international law (Geneva Convention Article 33: prohibition of collective punishment)
While EU member states, the UN and other international bodies have acknowledged the dire humanitarian situation in Gaza as a result of collective punishment, President von der Leyen has explicitly expressed unilateral solidarity with Israel.
3. undermining the moral authority of the EU
The President’s attitude towards Israel is in stark contrast to her condemnation of similar actions in the past, such as Russia’s against civilian infrastructure in Ukraine, which she described as war crimes. This is application of international law as it sees fit, which undermines the EU’s moral authority.
4. circumvention of institutional processes
Ursula von der Leyen‘s actions not only bypassed the European Council, but also disregarded the separation of powers within the EU, according to which foreign policy is not determined by the Commission.
Call for action
In response to the Commission President’s overstepping of her authority and disregard for the fundamental principles of human rights and democracy, we call on Ursula von der Leyen to resign immediately from her position as President of the European Commission. If she refuses to do so, we call upon the German government to retract her as commissioner.
We call on EU citizens and institutions to stand up for the values that bind us together as a community and to try to restore the moral authority of the European Union on the international stage.
International law must apply to all. If it is not applied equally everywhere, it is worth nothing.
Please sign the petition below if you agree that Ursula von der Leyen’s actions are incompatible with the principles and laws of the European Union and warrant her immediate resignation.
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