For its first case study Sine Qua Non decided to address the incoherence between current EU policies in Israel and in the oPt and the reality on the ground. This research will also establish the EU responsibility in perpetuating the status quo and the recurring violation of its own values and principles. Here, you may find our different research topics and policy recommendations that go along. Our research projects represent the opinions of our collaborators, who use verified and verifiable sources in their research.

To read more on why we chose this topic as our first case study, click here.

Research Reports

Politicising PEGASE
Politicising the EU PEGASE Direct Financial Support Programme to structurally address the Palestinian fiscal unsustainability
June 2020
by Alessandro Ferrante

A significant part of the EU’s fiscal assistance to the Palestinian Authority is channelled through the PEGASE Direct Financial Support Programme. This instrument has nevertheless failed to address the structural drivers of the PA’s unsustainable fiscal position. Fiscal losses as well as the regressive issues featuring in the Palestinian tax structure are largely ignored by the highly technocratic approach expressed in the latest PDFS action plan. Given the increasingly worrying fiscal situation of the PA, this report proposes to urgently revise the PDFS approach and to intensify the political content of this development program.

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Tapped and Untapped Potentials
European Union Support for Transregional Energy Infrastructure Projects and the Middle East Peace Process
April 2020
by Stefan Wolfrum

As the European Union attempts to diversify its natural gas supply, it is aiming to benefit from the recently discovered hydrocarbon fields in the Eastern Mediterranean as a potential alternative supply source. The EU also aims to decarbonize its energy production. This research explores the current transregional energy infrastructure projects supported by the EU and in the MENA region and proposes alternatives considering the political and economic implications.

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UNRWA and the European Union: Changing Contexts for Palestine Refugees
October 2019
by Rebecca Chacon Naranjo

This paper explores the political, financial and administrative crisis faced by the United Nations Relief Works Agency for Palestine refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), as well as the nature of the EU-UNRWA relationship, with particular focus on EUMS contributions to UNRWA and the EU-UNRWA Joint Declaration 2017-2020. It demonstrates how the financial, administrative and political problems UNRWA is facing today are a result of it being an agency designed to deliver short term, rapid relief.

While UNRWA has factually become a key political player in the topic of Palestinian refugees today, its mandate impedes it from having any real political bargaining power. The paper will argue that the EU’s policy towards UNRWA has exacerbated the latter’s problems due to the faulty assumption that it indeed has such bargaining power. The paper will explain how the EU could possibly remedy (at least part of) UNRWA’s current issues by virtue of it recently becoming its primary donor.

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European Union Policy Towards the WASH Crisis of the Gaza Strip

September 2019
by Camille Abescat

The Gaza Strip is currently facing a drastic water and sanitation crisis which is closely linked with an energy crisis that it also endures. This latter is caused by the Israeli-imposed blockade on the Strip as well as its dependence on both Israel and the Palestinian Authority. This paper aims to advocate for European policies that support Palestinians’ energy independence and sovereignity over their natural resources, beyond short-term and ineffective interventions.

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European cooperation framework with Israel and the PA

With “cooperation framework” we refer to the set of norms which tie the EU and a third country, through bilateral and multilateral agreements, common policies and shared projects. These are presented in clusters based on their main activity (trade, research, humanitarian relief…) and may articulate in a range of more specific sub-projects. Given the different nature and aim of each agreement, they are built on different legal provisions and may be supported by a variety of funding plans,each presenting its own conditions, obligations and financing instruments.

The initial pillar for the development of cooperation is the conclusion of a bilateral Association Agreement, an international agreement setting up an all-embracing framework to conduct bilateral relations providing progressive liberalization of trade and a “close economic and political cooperation”. The common features of these agreements, all based on art. 217 TFEU, include the institution of paritary bodies taking decisions binding on the parties and, since 1995, a necessary clause on human rights and democratic principles. Click the links below to learn more about the EU’s cooperation efforts with the Palestinian Authority and Israel.


Advocating for a coherent
European foreign policy in
the MENA region

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