UN Calls on Israel To Abandon West Bank Annexation Plans

New York, MINA – The United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has urged Israel to drop plans to annex parts of the occupied West Bank.

“It would be a most serious violation of international law,” said Guterres in a report made public on Tuesday as quoted by Arabnews.

The report to the Security Council comes ahead of its twice-yearly meeting on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, set for Wednesday. Several ministers are set to take part at the request of the Arab League.

In the document, Guterres says an Israeli annexation would be “devastating” for hopes of fresh negotiations and an eventual two-state solution.

“I call upon Israel to abandon its annexation plans, that such a move would threaten efforts to advance regional peace,” he said.

“If implemented, this would constitute a most serious violation of international law, including the Charter of the United Nations.”
Guterres noted the opposition to annexation, including within Israeli society.

“This would be calamitous for Palestinians, Israelis and the region,” he added.

The government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said it could begin the annexation process from July 1. Plans are to annex Jewish settlements in the West Bank as well as the strategic Jordan Valley.

The plan has been rejected in its entirety by the Palestinians.

The Security Council meeting, to be held by video conference, will be the last major international meeting on the issue before the July 1 deadline.

Diplomats who spoke to AFP on condition of anonymity said a vast majority of UN members would again oppose the Israeli plans on Wednesday.

“We must send a clear message, that it was not enough to simply condemn Israeli policy, and raising the possibility of a case before the International Court of Justice,” said envoy.

“Any annexation would have quite big consequences for the two-state solution in the peace process,” said another ambassador on condition of anonymity. (T/R6/RE1)

Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)