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Germany criticizes Netanyahu’s annexation plan

Merkel’s government says new Israeli settlements in occupied West Bank are violation of international law

Ayhan Şimşek   | 08.04.2019
Germany criticizes Netanyahu’s annexation plan

BERLIN 

Germany on Monday criticized Israel’s new settlement plans and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s election pledge to annex Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank.

Prime Minister Angela Merkel's government is “gravely concerned” by recent reports of the expansion of Israeli settlements, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Adebahr told a news conference in Berlin.

“The federal government, as wall as our EU partners, consider these settlements in the Palestinian territories a violation of international law and one of the main obstacles to a negotiated two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians,” she said.

Adebahr also criticized Netanyahu’s controversial pledge to annex Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank if he wins the national election this Tuesday.

“We stand firmly behind the international agreed principles of a negotiated peaceful solution. The latest statements about plans for a unilateral annexation of parts of West Bank clearly contradict that,” she stressed.

Israel occupied the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, during the 1967 Arab-Israeli War.

International law views the entire West Bank as “occupied territory” and considers all Israeli settlement building there as illegal.

Roughly 650,000 Jewish settlers currently live on more than 100 settlements in the Israeli-occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem.

The Palestinians, for their part, want both these territories -- along with the Gaza Strip -- for the establishment of a future Palestinian state.

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