Thursday, the Palestinian Legislative Council (Parliament) called on Thursday for the endorsement of the steadfast population of the occupied city of Jerusalem through implementing projects that aim at strengthening Palestinians’ roots in the face of the occupation and the rabid campaign of Judaisation targeting them.
The rapporteur of the Al-Quds and Al-Aqsa Committee in the Palestinian Legislative Council, MP Ahmed Abu Halabiya, demanded on Thursday that the Palestinian Authority (PA) undertakes an active role in pursuing the occupation authorities for the crimes they are committing against Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa Mosque.
He condemned the occupation’s endorsement of a plan to build 2,000 new settlement units in the Palestinian land in the West Bank and east of the occupied Jerusalem city.
Abu Halabiya insisted: “The occupation’s plan to Judaise the Palestinian lands through the expansion of illegal settlements, i.e. building 2,000 new settlement units, is a crime and it violates the international law. These moves necessitate an international step towards exerting pressure on the Israeli authorities to stop these flagrant breaches.”
He added that “the expansion of Zionist settlements and the demolition of Palestinian houses is a consecration of the ingrained Judaic violations, and comes within what the US President Trump supported, following his recognition of the annexation of the West Bank to the occupation entity.”
Abu Halabiya pointed out that the most dangerous aspect of the situation is the statements made by the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu about his decision to take over the Jordan Valley, while seeking US support to annex the rest of the West Bank settlements, in addition to establishing thousands of new housing units inside it.
Netanyahu has vowed, on several occasions, that he will impose Israeli sovereignty on the Jordan Valley and northern Dead Sea region in case he is elected again; saying: “We must establish fixed borders for the state of Israel, to ensure that the West Bank would not become like the Gaza Strip.”
The Israeli settlement project, which is devouring large areas of West Bank lands, including Jerusalem, represents the main obstacle to the resumption of peace negotiations between Palestinians and Israelis, which have been stalled since April 2014.
Israeli estimates indicate that about 640,000 settlers live in 196 settlement units, in addition to 200 outposts in the West Bank, including the city of Jerusalem, which include about 220,000 settlers.
The Israeli government has rejected repeated requests from Palestinians and the international community to stop settlement-building in the occupied territories, which constitutes a violation of the international law.
The international community considers the overwhelming majority of settlements as illegal, based on the Fourth Geneva Convention, which prohibits the occupation authorities from transferring Israelis to the occupied territories.