Palestinian and regional leaders have sharply denounced Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu‘s pledge to annex large parts of the occupied West Bank if he wins next week’s snap election.
Netanyahu, who is fighting for his political life after an inconclusive vote in April, said on Tuesday Israel will “apply Israeli sovereignty to the Jordan Valley and the northern Dead Sea immediately” if he secured a fifth term in the September 17 polls.
Arab nations condemn Netanyahu's West Bank annexation plan https://t.co/3J1gaxFO1Y
— BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) September 11, 2019
The Jordan Valley and the northern Dead Sea make up 30 percent of the West Bank. They lie in Area C, which means they are mostly under Israeli military and civil control.
Approximately 65,000 Palestinians and 11,000 Israelis residing in illegal settlements live in that area, according to Israeli human rights group B’Tselem. The main Palestinian city is Jericho, with about 28 villages and smaller Bedouin communities.
Netanyahu offers West Bank annexation to right-wing voters ahead of cliffhanger election https://t.co/67orI6MlRA
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) September 10, 2019
After Netanyahu’s announcement, Arab foreign ministers meeting in Cairo called his election promise a “dangerous development and a new Israeli aggression by declaring the intention to violate the international law.”
“The Arab League regards these statements as undermining the chances of any progress in the peace process and will torpedo all its foundations.”
Here's the map of Netanyahu's proposed annexation!!
This is how #Netanyahu wins elections. Pledges to take away land from Palestinians..
— ksatria baja hitam 🇮🇩🇵🇸 (@boedz_jayz) September 10, 2019
In a series of separate statements, Qatar criticized “Israel’s continued contempt of international law”; Turkey slammed the annexation pledge as “racist”; Jordan called Netanyahu’s plan a “serious escalation”; and Saudi Arabia called for an emergency meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).
The United Nations, meanwhile, warned that Netanyahu’s plan would have “no international legal effect”.
During his televised announcement, Netanyahu also reaffirmed a pledge to annex all of the Jewish-only settlements Israel has established in the West Bank.
(Al Jazeera, PC, Social Media)