Middle East, Europe

'EU will not recognize any changes regarding Jerusalem'

Policy of settlement construction, expansion, including in East Jerusalem, illegal under international law, official says

Diyar Güldoğan   | 11.09.2019
'EU will not recognize any changes regarding Jerusalem'

ANKARA

The EU will not recognize any changes with regard to Jerusalem, an official said on Wednesday in response to the Israeli premier's remarks.  

"As reaffirmed in numerous Foreign Affairs Council conclusions, the EU will not recognize any changes to the pre-1967 borders including with regard to Jerusalem, other than those agreed by the parties," an EU spokesperson said.

The remarks came a day after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pledged that if he wins general elections slated for Sept. 17, he would annex parts of occupied lands in the West Bank including north of the Dead Sea and Jordan Valley.

The EU spokesperson said the policy of settlement construction and expansion, including in East Jerusalem, is illegal under international law.

This would undermine the viability of the two-state solution and the prospects for a lasting peace, spokesperson added.

Some 650,000 Israeli Jews currently live in more than 100 settlements built since 1967, when Israel occupied the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

The Palestinians see these territories -- along with the Gaza Strip -- as integral for the establishment of a future Palestinian state.

International law views both the West Bank and East Jerusalem as "occupied territories" and considers all Jewish settlement-building activity there illegal.

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