PA Backlash as Israel Attempts to Legalize Settlements

Riyad al-Maliki, the Palestinian Authority (PA) Foreign Minister, said on Sunday that Israel’s decision to build a new settlement in the occupied West Bank is an attempt to “legalize settlements and destroy the two-state solution”, Anadolu reported.

Al-Maliki, along with Belgian counterpart, Didier Reynders said in a press conference in Ramallah that, “The decision of the Israeli defense minister to build a new settlement between Ramallah and Nablus comes in the context of legalizing settlements.”

Israeli newspaper, Haaretz, reported on Early on Sunday that the Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon had decided, in cooperation with Israeli settlement organisations, to build a new settlement between Ramallah and Nablus.

Al-Maliki responded to this decision by saying that, “We call on the EU to take actual measures to save the two-state solution and to stop the continuous Israeli violations against the Palestinians and their properties, as well as to put pressure on the Israeli occupation to lift the siege on Gaza and end the Palestinian suffering.”

He added: “The Israeli occupation government led by (Benjamin) Netanyahu and his extremist coalition creates new facts on the ground in order to undermine the two-state solution through building more settlements and inciting against the leadership of the Palestinians.”

Reynders expressed his support for the French initiative to resume peace talks. He reiterated his country’s rejection of Israeli settlements, considering them an “obstacle” ahead of the peace process and the two-state solution.

(MEMO, PC)

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