Dr. Saeb Erekat on PM Netanyahu's New Settlement Announcements, including for the so-called E1 Colonial Project

Press Releases
February 25, 2020

Yesterday, the UN Security Council reaffirmed its support for the two-state solution, respect for international law, and relevant UN resolutions. While we welcome the restated position, we reiterate our call for concrete measures to save the prospects of a just and lasting peace. We have also called for an international peace conference based on international law and relevant UN resolutions.

For the expansion of Israel's illegal colonial-settlement enterprise, Israel's Prime Minister today announced new settlements in the northern Bethlehem area and on the eastern gateway to Jerusalem. The so-called E1 colonial project, which Israel plans to build on the eastern gateway to Jerusalem, aims at linking the illegal colonial settlement of Ma'alee Adumim with occupied East Jerusalem, as well as the permanent severing of the occupied West Bank into two parts that renders the achievement of an independent and contiguous State of Palestine impossible. Disregarding years of international efforts, Israel anyway chose to relaunch this project with the full support it has today from the Trump administration. 

Netanyahu's message to the international community is clear: Israel cares less about statements and positions. Per the agreed-upon plan between the U.S. and Israel teams, Israel now continues to impose new illegal facts on the ground that systematically violate international law and human rights, annihilate the inalienable rights of the people of Palestine, and threaten the very peace and security of the entire region. It is now clear for the international community that this vision of annexation only aims at burying the prospects of a negotiated solution.

The internationally endorsed two-state solution is the only way to ensure peace, rights, and security for all. Time and again, there is another opportunity for the international community to send a clear message to Israel that it is capable of acting by its statements. And those who are trying to shut down the legitimate work for Palestine's freedom, justice, and respect for human rights in international organizations, including at the United Nations and the International Criminal Court, must take note of their complicity. Neither mere statements nor complicity will bring peace. It is time to hold Israel accountable by imposing the necessary and long overdue sanctions. 

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