Between autonomy and effectiveness: reassessing the EU's foreign policy toward the Israel-Palestine conflict

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


External organisations

  • School of Government, Plymouth University, Plymouth, UK


Through a consideration of policy towards the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, this article examines the autonomy and effectiveness of the EU as an actor. We discuss first the criteria by which autonomy and effectiveness can be judged and then consider these by reference to EU policy since the formation of the Quartet in 2002. We argue that the EU has been effective in articulating a consistent and clear set of policies on Israel-Palestine. While this has placed it on-side with US-led initiatives to foster a solution to the conflict, we regard such an alignment as consistent with EU autonomy. These findings allow us to make qualified but still positive comments on the emerging EU Global Strategy. The Israeli-Palestinian
conflict certainly demonstrates the limitations of EU external action but in
affirming its credentials as an autonomous partner of the US, the EU is less ineffectual than some commentators claim.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)559-577
Number of pages19
JournalEuropean Foreign Affairs Review
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 9 Sep 2016