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Israel settlements undermine peace in Middle East - German FM

January 8, 2024 at 5:17 pm

German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock listens during press conference on November 4, 2023 in Baku, Azerbaijan [Aziz Karimov/Getty Images]

German Foreign Minister, Annalena Baerbock, criticised on Monday Israel’s policy of constructing and expanding illegal settlements on Occupied Palestinian Territories, Anadolu Agency reports.

“The construction of settlements is illegal. It undermines lasting peace and endangers the two-state solution and thereby endangers Israel’s security,” Baerbock told reporters during her visit to a village in the West Bank.

“Palestinians must be able to live in security, dignity and self-determination, in their own land,” she added.

The Minister underlined that a lasting peace can only be achieved by a two-state solution, which would enable a secure Israel and an independent, democratic Palestinian State to exist peacefully side by side.

During her visit, Baerbock met Palestinians living in the Al-Mazra’ah Al-Qibliyah village, which is surrounded by several Israeli settlements.

She called on Israeli authorities to take measures to protect Palestinians from attacks by extremist Israeli settlers.

“It is the responsibility of the Israeli government to implement and enforce the rule of law when there are attacks on people who live here legitimately,” she said.

Israeli settler attacks against Palestinians in the Occupied West Bank have soared to its highest level since the escalation of the Israel-Gaza conflict on 7 October.

Extremist settlers carried out 2,410 attacks last year, according to the Palestinian authorities. At least 22 Palestinians were killed by settlers, 10 victims were killed over the past three months. Hundreds of Palestinians were also forcibly displaced from their lands.

READ: Israel, settlers commit 146 violations against Bedouin communities in December