Dangerous provocation by Netanyahu - GulfToday

Dangerous provocation by Netanyahu

West Bank

The photo has been used for illustrative purposes.

The announcement by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on the planned annexation of land from the occupied West Bank to Israel in the event of an election win is a dangerous plan that deals yet another stiff blow to the Middle East peace process, which is already facing a political deadlock owing to Israeli intransigence.

As pointed out by Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, UAE Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the announcement represents a dangerous escalation that violates all international resolutions without the slightest regard for their legitimacy by undermining the noble intentions of those in the international community working towards a peaceful resolution to the Palestinian issue.

Netanyahu’s declaration undoubtedly threatens to undermine decades of political efforts by the international community to achieve a fair and just resolution to the Palestinian issue.

The gravity of the issue could be gauged by the fact that the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has convened an emergency foreign ministers› meeting on Sunday to discuss the Israeli escalation.

«At the request of Saudi Arabia, the organisation will hold an emergency meeting on Sunday at the level of foreign ministers in Jeddah to discuss the serious Israeli escalation,» the 57-member organisation stated on Twitter.

Netanyahu’s dangerous pledge has angered not only Palestinians, Arab states, United Nations and the European Union, but also all peace-loving people across the globe.

UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric has hit the nail on the head by declaring that any Israeli decision to impose its laws, jurisdictions and administration in the occupied West Bank is without any international legal effect.

Such a prospect would be devastating to the potential of reviving negotiations, regional peace and the very essence of a two-state solution.

The European Union too has warned that Netanyahu›s plans would undermine the viability of the two-state solution and the prospects for a lasting peace.

A recent report of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs indicated that since 1967, around 250 Israeli settlements and outposts were established in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, which led to the loss of properties and sources of income while the attacks of Israeli settlers against Palestinians were encouraged by the lack of any international accountability.

The international community should end Israel’s occupation and guarantee the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people, including the right to self-determination and establish an independent country, with East Jerusalem as its capital.

Blind support by Washington has emboldened Israel to embark on a dangerous path. This is especially so considering a series of actions taken by the Donald Trump administration which has clearly been in favour of Israel and none in support of the Palestinian cause.

The halting of funds to the UNRWA, recognising occupied Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, relocating US embassy from Tel Aviv to occupied Jerusalem, refusing to restrain Israel from illegally expanding settlements are just a few among such moves hostile to Palestinians.  

Israeli settlements are illegal under international law and major obstacles to peace.

Palestinians view Netanyahu’s announcement as part of wider Israeli attempts to force them out of the West Bank.

The world community should no more remain silent and force Israel to desist from taking illegal and irresponsible steps that undermine the chances of progress in the peace process.

As stated by Sheikh Abdullah, addressing the declaration by Netanyahu is a shared responsibility that requires the international community to take necessary action against this alarming development.