“It is a right of EU citizens to know how their national parties vote on issues related to Israel,” said Tomas Sandell, founding director of the European Coalition for Israel (ECI). To that end, the ECI marked the Jewish state’s 75th anniversary by conducting a survey of which European Union countries and EU Parliament parties are most and least supportive of Israel.
This information, continued Sandell, “not only contributes to a better and more informative debate, but it also strengthens EU participatory democracy.”
The survey was conducted by examining 71 EU Parliament votes related to Israel between 2019-2022. Country scores are based on how the national parties that make up the EU Parliament factions voted.
So which countries are most supportive of Israel?
Poland tops the list, with its national parties voting in Israel’s favor 60.27 percent of the time in the EU Parliament. Rounding out the top five are Italy (59.53 percent), Bulgaria (59.31 percent), Czech Republic (59.16 percent) and Slovakia (58.75 percent).
The three least supportive nations are Spain (26 percent), Cyprus (24.4 percent) and Ireland, whose national parties vote in Israel’s favor just 14.6 percent of the time.
As a whole, Germany’s national parties voted in Israel’s favor 46.64 percent of the time. But one German faction, Deutsche Zentrumspartei, was the only national party on the list to score a perfect 100 percent voting record in favor of Israel.
Among EU Parliament political groups, the European Conservatives and Reformists group (ECR) and Identity and Democracy (ID) both voted in Israel’s favor nearly 90 percent of the time.
The European People’s Party (EPP) voted in Israel’s favor over 60 percent of the time, followed by Renew Europe (45 percent).
The left-wing liberal groups Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D), Greens/EFA and The Left each voted in favor of Israel less than 20 percent of the time, with The Left almost never voting in Israel’s favor.
The clear takeaway, noted Sandell, is that “the biggest support for Israel can be found among parties on the right of the centre in the European Parliament. The further one gets to the political left the more critical are the attitudes towards Israel.”
The same is seen reflected in the country scores. Poland and Italy both have right-wing governments, while Spain and Ireland have long been dominated by left-wing politics.
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