West Bank, ALRAY - European Union stressed on Tuesday that it exerts its efforts to hinder Israel from applying annexation plan.
European Commission spokesman for foreign affairs, Peter Stano said that EU exert its efforts to prevent applying the annexation plan.
“The foreign ministers of the member states discussed the matter at their meeting on 15 May, reaffirming that any annexation would be against international law, and at the same time, they decided to intensify diplomatic efforts with partners such as Israel, Palestine, the United States, Jordan and other partners to mobilize the Union's efforts to prevent the annexation plan,” said Stano.
In case Israel applied its annexation plan, the member states will consider the suitable response, but at this stage we are using all our diplomatic means so that we do not reach this point, he commented.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Tuesday that discussions with the U.S. on his plan to annex occupied West Bank territory would continue “in the coming days,” indicating he would miss a July 1 target date for beginning the controversial process.
Netanyahu made the comments shortly after wrapping up talks with White House envoy Avi Berkowitz and the U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman. The sides have been holding talks for several months on finalizing a map spelling out which areas of the West Bank will be annexed by Israel.
Netanyahu has been eager to begin annexing West Bank territory in line with President Donald Trump's Mideast plan. The plan, unveiled in January, envisions turning over some 30% of the territory under permanent Israeli control, while giving the Palestinians autonomy in the remaining land.
But the plan to redraw the Mideast map has come under fierce international criticism. The U.N. secretary-general, the European Union and key Arab countries have all said Israeli annexation would violate international law and undermine the goal of establishing a viable independent Palestinian state alongside Israel. The Palestinians, who seek all of the West Bank as part of a future state, have rejected the Trump plan.
Israel captured the West Bank from Jordan in the 1967 Mideast war. The international community considers the territory to be occupied, and for Israel’s more than 120 settlements to be illegal.
Israel’s planned annexation of West Bank settlements and the Jordan Valley is considered a declaration of war, according to Hamas.
Hamas military spokesperson Abu Obeida made the statements Thursday over a video feed saying Israel would bitterly regret the decision to apply their laws over the disputed territory.
The anticipated Palestinian resistance was reiterated by Senior Hamas Official Dr. Basem Naim, who told Fox News that annexation would destroy any possibility of finding a political solution to the ongoing conflict.
“Palestinians would not accept these plans at all. They are going to resist these plans by all means available. Gaza is not excluded from this,” he said.