RAMALLAH: Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh has condemned the US announcement declaring Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank as legal.
Talking to Palestinian news agency Wafa, Mohammad Shtayyeh said it was nothing but an effort to support Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the final moments of the prime minister’s race.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has announced the new policy of the Trump administration saying that America no longer considered Israeli settlements to be illegal. Palestinians, European officials and rights groups have condemned the announcement.
In a series of tweets, the Palestinian leader Shtayyeh denounced and rejected the statement of US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. He said it was a mockery of international law and resolutions that criminalized Israeli settlements and prohibited the occupying power from transferring its civilian population into the occupied territory.
He said the bias of the Donald Trump administration towards the most extreme in Israel blinded it from seeing the basic principles of international law and consensus. “It’s an attempt to support Netanyahu in the last moments of the competition for the post of Prime Minister.”
The Palestinian PM said Israeli settlements denied the freedom and independence of the State of Palestine. “We demand the international community to address this dangerous statement, which is a blow to more than 25 years of international efforts towards the achievement of peace,” he said.
It was crucial to translate political statements into action on the ground, he added.
Spokesman for the Hamas Hazim Kasim in a statement said the announcement of Washington confirms that it is a partner in the attacks on Palestinians and their rights.
He said the Israeli settlements are war crimes where Israel expelled the real owners of these lands and built settlements using force and brought Israelis there from all over the world.