The Israeli parliamentary approval of a law legalizing settlements in the West Bank undermines the two-state solution and obstructs peacemaking efforts between the Israeli and the Palestinian sides, the Egyptian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Tuesday.
Earlier on Monday, the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, approved the so-called “Regulation Bill” that retroactively legalizes about 3,850 housing units in dozens of outposts built illegally on privately owned Palestinian lands.
“The bill is considered an establishment of the illegal status of settlements in violation of international laws and conventions as well as the UN Security Council’s relevant resolutions,” Egyptian Foreign Ministry’s spokesman Ahmed Abu Zeid said in the statement.
He added that such unilateral measures would obstruct the peacemaking efforts to revive the Middle East peace process and resume direct talks between the Palestinians and the Israelis, stressing “the right of the Palestinian people to establish their own state on their complete territories with East Jerusalem as its capital city.”
The move was also condemned by the Arab League that described the Israeli new law as “no more than a cover for stealing the lands and appropriating the properties of the Palestinians.”
In early December 2016, the Knesset initially approved a couple of controversial pro-settlement bills that are meant to retroactively legalize about 4,000 settlement homes as well as unauthorized Israeli outposts and to allow expropriation of more Palestinian lands in the West Bank.
Over 400,000 Israeli settlers currently live in the West Bank and at least 200,000 others live in East Jerusalem, which the Palestinians see as the capital city of their future state.
Israel is blamed by the international community for the deadlock of the peace process due to its settlement expansion policy that is rejected even by its strongest ally the United States. Enditem