For the second time, the European Leadership Network (ELNET) surveyed parliamentarians across Europe on their perspectives on their respective relations with Israel and their own Middle East policies, as well as on Jewish life in Europe. The survey was conducted by ELNET in February and March 2023. Members of 17 European parliaments were invited via e-mail, including the European Parliament. 381 parliamentarians participated.
An overwhelming majority of the participating MPs consider their country’s relations with Israel as very good or rather good (66 percent). For most politicians, historical responsibility toward Israel forms the basis of these special relations. Shared values and interests are also strong motives for European parliamentarians. Around three-quarters (77 percent) call for greater cooperation with Israel. Thematically, the focus is on science and education, defense, and homeland security, but also innovation issues, health and climate change. In addition, European politicians argue that their countries should assume more responsibility within the framework of the Abraham Accords.
The results of the survey will be presented at the ELNET International Policy Conference (EIPC) 2023, which will be held in Paris from May 8-10. More than 70 speakers and 500 guests from Europe, Israel and the United States will meet to discuss further possibilities of cooperation between Europe and Israel in the context of a new era.
Carsten Ovens, Executive Director of ELNET in Germany, comments: “The changing world order with states striving for supra-regional power such as Iran, rising global challenges, and the war in Ukraine undoubtfully point out that Israel and Europe are well advised to invest in their strategic partnership and political alliance. As the results of the Israel Survey 2023 show, most of the European parliamentarians surveyed would like to see closer cooperation with Israel. Shared values and common interests are seen as important basis for working together. It is now up to the EU, the national governments of Europe, and Israel to identify new opportunities for cooperation and pursue them.”