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News > U.S.

US to Recognize Israeli Annexation of Occupied Palestinian Land

  • Israel’s illegal settlements are one of the most problematic obstacles facing the peace process.

    Israel’s illegal settlements are one of the most problematic obstacles facing the peace process. | Photo: AFP

Published 28 April 2020

"We are prepared to recognize Israeli actions to extend Israeli sovereignty (...) to areas of the West Bank," a U.S. State Department spokesperson said.

Expanding on remarks made last week by United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who said annexation was "an Israeli decision," the U.S. State Department confirmed Monday that it was prepared to recognize Israel's annexation of much of the illegally occupied West Bank.


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"As we have made consistently clear, we are prepared to recognize Israeli actions to extend Israeli sovereignty and the application of Israeli law to areas of the West Bank that the vision foresees as being part of the State of Israel," a U.S. State Department spokesperson said.

The step would be "in the context of the Government of Israel agreeing to negotiate with the Palestinians along the lines set forth in President Trump's Vision," the official said.

These comments come after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday he was confident the U.S. would give Israel the approval within some weeks to move ahead with the de facto annexation of parts of the occupied West Bank.

Netanyahu, who has sealed a power-sharing agreement with former rival Benny Gantz, will remain in office for now and has vowed to go ahead with annexations on the condition of Washington’s greenlight.

U.S. President Donald Trump -a close ally to Netanyahu- has been enforcing pro-Israel policies for the past three years.

The White House has moved the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, recognized Israeli sovereignty over the Syrian Golan Heights, and already declared that West Bank settlements are not illegal.

Trump unveiled in January a so-called "deal of the century" for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. 

The plan would let Israel impose sovereignty all the way to Jordan while Palestinians would be granted a sovereign but disjointed and demilitarised entity along with promises of major investment. The Palestinian state's capital would be on the outskirts of Jerusalem, the disputed city that would remain fully under Israeli sovereignty.

The annexation of occupied territory is illegal under international law, and Palestinians along with the United Nations (U.N.) and the European Union (EU) have rejected Trump’s proposal and Israel’s plans to annex its illegal settlements.

But because of Israel's increase in settlement building and its efforts to consolidate control over Palestinian lands, Some Palestinians are starting to believe that the two-state solution has become a distant dream.

Some argue that current circumstances make a one-state solution with equal rights for both Israeli and Palestinian citizens the only realistic option.

The Arab League is planning to hold a virtual meeting this week to discuss the annexation plan.

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