The foreign ministers of four EU countries urged Israel to halt settlement expansion in East Jerusalem in a statement released on Wednesday, the official Palestinian news agency WAFA reported.
Earlier this month, the Israeli occupation authorities approved plans for the construction of some 3,500 new settler units in occupied East Jerusalem, nearly half of which are to be built in the illegal settlements of Givat Hamatos and Har Homa.
"settlements are illegal under international law…Such actions as building the separation barrier beyond the 1967 line, demolitions and confiscation – including of EU funded projects – evictions, forced transfers… https://t.co/NxB4oW7lpN
— Mission of the State of Palestine in Ireland (@IrePalestine) January 20, 2022
In their statement, the foreign ministers of France, Germany, Spain and Italy stated that they “are deeply concerned at the decision to advance plans for the construction of hundreds of new housing units in East Jerusalem, including between Givat HaMatos and Har Homa.”
“The new housing units would further disconnect the West Bank from East Jerusalem and constitute an additional obstacle to the Two-State Solution,” they added.
Israel/Palestine:house demolition in Sheikh Jarrah &possible further evictions also from Silwan 👉fuelling tensions. Construction plans in Har Homa & Givat Hamatos undermine prospects 4 peace.Settlements, demolitions & evictions 👉 illegal under intl law. https://t.co/03pf0ExvPn
— Peter Stano (@ExtSpoxEU) January 19, 2022
They urged the Israeli occupation authorities to “reverse this decision.”
“This decision directly threatens the viability of a future Palestinian state. Israeli settlements are in clear violation of international law and stand in the way of a just, lasting and comprehensive peace between Israelis and Palestinians.”
They also voiced deep concerns over “the recent developments in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of East-Jerusalem”, in reference to the forced expulsion of the Salhia family and demolition of their house in the neighborhood.
(WAFA, PC, Social Media)