The United States has declared that Israel’s settlement in the occupied West Bank is not a violation of international law.
During a press briefing at the State Department in Washington, DC, Mike Pompeo said that the United States does not consider Israeli settlement in Palestinian territories illegal, and we must recognize the ground realities.
Mike Pompeo’s statement is being called a change in US policy on the occupied West Bank for four decades.
The United States, like the rest of the world, has described Israel’s settlement in the West Bank as ‘illegal’.
On Monday, Mike Pompeo said that after all legal discussions, the United States has come to the conclusion that expanding Israel’s civilian settlements in the West Bank is not a violation of international law.
He said that declaration of international law violation in the civilian settlement of Israel in Palestinian territories did not benefit the situation in the past and that doing so did not pave the way for peace.
Palestinian negotiators, on the other hand, condemned the US Secretary of State’s statement, saying the US decision was a threat to global stability, security, and peace.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed Mike Pompeo’s announcement on the West Bank, saying that a change in US policy was an important step toward “correcting the historical error.” He also appealed to other countries to change their policy, just like the United States.
The settlement of Jews in the occupied West Bank is a decades-old dispute between Israel and Palestine.
Israel occupied East Jerusalem and the West Bank in 1967, and since then it has settled 140 settlements with at least six million Jews.
Under international law, Israel’s settlement is considered illegal, but Israel does not recognize the international community’s position.
Palestine demands that the settlements be removed from the West Bank because, without the West Bank, the dream of establishing an independent Palestine is not possible.