The Arab League has strongly condemned a new Israeli law that mandates a referendum ahead of any withdrawal from the Israeli-occupied territories.
Describing the law as "abusive and provocative," Arab League’s Deputy Secretary General Ahmed bin Helli said on Wednesday that the new law "showed clearly the hostile nature" of Israel and "the fact that it does not take international law and the foundations of the peace process seriously."
He also said Israel was putting obstacles, one after the other, in the way of the peace process.
On Monday, Israel’s parliament passed a bill conditioning any withdrawal from the illegally annexed Golan Heights or East al-Quds (Jerusalem) on holding a referendum.
Israel captured the West Bank, including East al-Quds, from Jordan and the Golan Heights from Syria during the Six-Day War in 1967. It later annexed East al-Quds and the Golan Heights in 1981 in a move not recognized internationally.
According to the new law, any withdrawal could be approved only after it wins a two-thirds majority in the parliament. If it fails to do so, the proposal would be put to a referendum.
Top Palestinian and Syrian officials have also condemned the new Israeli law. Palestinians consider East al-Quds as the capital of their future state.
"The Israeli leadership, yet again, is making a mockery of international law," said top Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat on Tuesday.
"Ending the occupation of our land is not and cannot be dependent on any sort of referendum."
Syria has also repeatedly demanded a full Israeli withdrawal from all of the Golan Heights as the primary condition for a peace deal with Tel Aviv.