The Barcelona process or the Euro-Mediterranean partnership (Euromed) began in 1995 with the Euro-Mediterranean conference in Barcelona. It was organised by the European Union to strengthen its relations with the countries of the Mashriq and Maghreb regions. The partnership laid the foundations for the Union for the Mediterranean.The enlargement of the European Union in 2004 brought two other Mediterranean countries (Cyprus and Malta) into the Union, while the number of Member States was increased by 10 in total. The Euro-Mediterranean partnership now has 39 members: 27 Member States of the European Union, 3 candidate countries: Croatia, Macedonia and Turkey and 9 Mediterranean partners (Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestinian Authority, Syria and Tunisia). Libya has had observer status since 1999. By its seriousness, the Arab-Israeli conflict is the one that most affects the Union for the Mediterranean.  Following an armed conflict between Israel and Gaza from December 2008 to January 2009, the Arab group refused to meet at a high level, thus blocking all ministerial meetings scheduled for the first half of 2009.  The refusal of Arab foreign ministers to meet with their Israeli counterpart Avigdor Lieberman also led to the cancellation of two ministerial meetings on foreign affairs in November 2009 and June 2010.  The sectoral meetings of the Union for the Mediterranean have also been affected by Israel`s treatment of the populations affected by the Israeli population under its control.
At the Euro-Mediterranean Water Ministerial Meeting in Barcelona in April 2010, the water strategy was not approved, as it was a terminology disagreement over whether the territories claimed by Palestinians, Syrians and Lebanese as «occupied territories» or «occupied territories» should be described as «occupied territories» or «under occupation».  Two other ministerial meetings on higher education and agriculture had to be cancelled due to the same disparity.  The 1995 Barcelona Declaration sums up the objective of the initiative: «Transforming the Mediterranean basin into a space for dialogue, exchange and cooperation that guarantees peace, stability and prosperity.»  The declaration defines the three main objectives of the partnership, called «baskets» (i.e. strands or facets):  The Barcelona Declaration, an agreement between the Member States of the European Union and certain Mediterranean countries, allows the inhabitants of the partnership to live in the former without having to integrate. As a result, they eroded the history and culture of the former. The partnership resulted in a series of attempts by European countries to articulate their relations with their neighbours in North Africa and the Netherlands: the comprehensive Mediterranean policy (1972-1992) and the renewed Mediterranean policy (1992-1995).  The Euro-Mediterranean Partnership, also known as the Barcelona Process, was established in 1995 following the Euro-Mediterranean Conference of Foreign Ministers held in Barcelona on 27-28 November under the Spanish EU Presidency.