Netanyahu firm on Jewish settlement plan despite international backlash and isolation
Linkedin

Netanyahu firm on Jewish settlement plan despite international backlash and isolation

Tel Aviv : Israel | Dec 03, 2012 at 7:55 AM PST
XX XX
Views: Pending
 
Israeli settlers and supporters of Benjamin Netanyahu's Likud party rally in the West Bank

Despite widespread condemnation, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is adamant about going ahead with the latest settlement plan. The push to build the massive Jewish settlement was finalized after Palestine won de facto UN recognition of statehood.

A defiant Netanyahu brushed off mounting international criticism and declared at the weekly cabinet meeting, "We will carry on building in Jerusalem and in all the places that are on the map of Israel's strategic interests.”

In another dramatic turnaround, Israel decided to withhold Palestinian tax revenues worth about $100 million this month. The harsh move is perceived as Israel’s attempt to punish Palestine for going ahead with the UN bid despite opposion by Israel and the United States.

The construction of 3,000 homes would put an end to Palestinian’s dream of building a contiguous country. Especially, the much ambitious "preliminary zoning and planning work" for thousand of housing units in the zone named as E-1, near Jerusalem, would split the West Bank into two areas, separating the Palestinians.

While the plan to build the homes in E-1 has been on papers for long time, Israel was coerced to freeze its activities in E-1 under pressure from George W. Bush and Barack Obama. Israel claims the right to build cities based on historical and biblical links to the West Bank and Jerusalem, which the international community does not recognize.

International criticism

The news of 3,000 settler homes have initiated strong international condemnation from the United States, France, Britain and the European Union.

A concerted criticism aired across Europe on Monday, with Britain, France and Sweden meeting the Israeli ambassadors in their respective capitals to air strong disapproval of the Israel’s plan to erect 3,000 extra homes in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Significantly, this time the European condemnation seems "more than just condemnation." According to reports, Britain and France are contemplating on the option of recalling their envoys from Israel in protest against its decision to expand settlements.

The United Nations too has been voicing strong concerns on the settlement plan. Criticizing Netanyahu’s declaration, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said that the construction plan by Israel would indicate an almost fatal blow to the materialization of two-nation state. Israel, on the other hand, considers the plan appropriate as Palestine’s unilateral bid to approach the UN is a gross violation of the previous agreements signed with Israel.

Comments:

The recent developments on the Israeli political front indicate major fallout from the UN vote on Thursday granting observer state status to Palestine. The decision to construct the housing settlements in West Bank, thereby splitting Palestine’s hopes for a homeland, is predicted to cause ripples of confrontation in the Middle East.

In one stroke, Israel has slashed a big cut on the future of moribund Middle East peace process and the international community is left fuming at such a move.

While countries like Britain and France have come out openly to condemn the move, Canada, so far, has sent a muted response. However, international opinion is unanimous this time. Israel is facing isolation from every corner, beginning with the UN acceptance of the Palestinian state and now the widespread condemnation of Netanyahu’s settlement plan in West Bank and Jerusalem.

Israel is splitting the West Bank into two pieces, which is simply not going to work in terms of appeasing the Palestinians. The move predicts familiar, gory scenes of confrontation and violence from both sides. Each side then justifies its claim to security with the help of rockets, mortars, and bloody violence.

There seems to be no road ahead for the advancement of the peace process. Netanyahu leads a pro-settler government and opinion polls indicate his Likud party will regain power in Israel's Jan. 22 parliamentary election, despite opponents' allegations that Netanyahu’s policies have increased Israeli diplomatic isolation in the international sphere.

Sources:
Reuters
The Times of India

Other souces linked to within text.

1 of 11
Next
Israel says there are more than 300,000 settlers in the occupied West Bank
Israel says there are more than 300,000 settlers in the occupied West Bank
aymaan30 is based in New Delhi, Delhi, India, and is an Anchor on Allvoices.
Report Credibility
 
  • Clear
  • Share:
  • Share
  • Clear
  • Clear
  • Clear
  • Clear
 
 
 
Advertisement
 

News Stories

 
  • Israel settlement bid a ‘fatal blow' to peace: Ban

    Ban AFP 1 min ago Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends the weekly cabinet meeting at his offices in Jerusalem on Dec 2, 2012. Israel is halting the transfer of tax and tariff money it collects for the Palestinians in response to their...
  • Pressure mounts over Israel plans

    Britain and France have both summoned Israeli ambassadors in protest at Israel's decision to approve the construction of 3,000 new homes in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. The UK said the move would cast doubt on Israel's "stated commitment to...
  • Europe critical of Israeli expansion plans

      The Hindu
    December 3, 2012 Israel's decision to build new homes near occupied East Jerusalem is evoking an unexpectedly strong response in Europe-with Britain and France considering withdrawal of their ambassadors from Tel Aviv in protest. Reuters quoting a...
  • UK, France summon Israeli envoys over settlements

      Australian Broadcasting Corporation
    Israel faces European backlash over settlement plan Updated December 04, 2012 00:28:02 Britain, France and Sweden have summoned their Israeli ambassadors following the Jewish state's controversial plans to expand settlements in the West Bank and East...
  • UK may recall Israel ambassador over settlement plan

      The Observer
    Jim Hollander/EPA Britain is considering tough diplomatic measures, including the possible recall of its ambassador to Tel Aviv, in response to Israel 's announcement of settlement expansion. Its move followed the United Nations general assembly...
  • Britain, France Furious Over Israeli Settlement Decision, Mulling To Recall ...

      International Business Times
    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu In retaliation to a U.N. vote which accorded Palestine a non-member observer state status, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Friday decided to move ahead with plans to build some 3,000 new housing...

Images

 >
 

More From Allvoices

Related People

Report Your News Got a similar story?
Add it to the network!

Or add related content to this report



Use of this site is governed by our Terms of Use Agreement and Privacy Policy.

© Allvoices, Inc. 2008-2014. All rights reserved. Powered by PulsePoint.