Israeli settlements are an “obstruct to peace”, denounces the UN Security Council

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Israeli settlements are “an obstacle to peace”, denounces the UN Security Council

Ahmad Gharabli Agence France-Presse Aerial view of the Jewish settlement of Givat Zeev, near Ramallah, in the occupied West Bank, on February 3, 2023.

The UN Security Council on Monday denounced in a statement the legalization of nine Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank, calling settlements an “obstruct” to peace.

“The continued activities of colonization of Israel jeopardizes the viability of the two-state solution,” said the Council in this statement by the presidency, supported by all 15 members, but which does not have the binding scope of the resolution envisaged the last week.

It “strongly opposes all unilateral measures that impede peace, including, among others, the construction and expansion of Israeli settlements, the confiscation of Palestinian land, and the 'legalization' of settlements, the demolition of housing Palestinians and the displacement of Palestinian civilians.”

And he “expresses deep concern and dismay” over Israel's announcement to legalize the nine settlements and build new housing in the existing settlements.

Following this announcement by the Israeli security cabinet on February 12, the United Arab Emirates had circulated among the member states of the Council a draft resolution condemning “all attempts at annexation, including Israeli decisions and measures concerning settlements. and calling for “their immediate withdrawal”.

The text also called for Israel to “immediately and completely cease its settlement activities in the occupied territories, including East Jerusalem”.

< p>The initiative had provoked the dissatisfaction of the United States, which has the right of veto in the Council. The State Department had thus denounced a resolution “of little use in terms of the support necessary for the negotiations on the two-state solution”.

Washington had however at the same time denounced the Israeli announcement on the nine colonies.

The draft resolution was withdrawn after discussions in particular between Palestinians and Americans, indicated a diplomatic source.

Asked about his possible disappointment in downgrading the possible resolution to a presidential statement, Palestinian Ambassador to the UN Riyad Mansour stressed that the important thing was to have a “united position” from the Council.

“Isolating a party is a step in the right direction,” he told reporters.

In December 2016, for the first time since 1979, the Council security forces had called on Israel to end settlements in the Palestinian territories, in a resolution enabled by the decision of the United States not to use its right of veto.

The United States had abstained during this vote a few weeks before the transfer of power between Barack Obama and Donald Trump, when they had always supported Israel until then on this sensitive issue.

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