UNSG Antonio Guterres disappointed with Israel’s decision to build a new settlement

United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres voiced disappointment of Israel’s decision to build a new West Bank settlement, on lands the Palestinians demand for their future state. Guterres said he was alarmed by the move and condemned it as a unilateral action that threatens to undermine peace and the internationally desired two-state solution. 

“The Secretary-General took notice with disappointment and alarm of the decision by Israel to build a new settlement in the occupied Palestinian territory. The Secretary-General has consistently stressed that there is no Plan B for Israelis and Palestinians to live together in peace and security. He condemns all unilateral actions that, like the present one, threaten peace and undermine the two-state solution. Settlement activities are illegal under international law and present an obstacle to peace,” said Guterres.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu instructed his security cabinet to approve building a new settlement for Israeli settlers that were evacuated from the illegal outpost of Amona some two months ago, a promise the Israeli leader said he would uphold, even though Washington continues to search for a formula with Jerusalem on limiting the country’s construction policy on lands the Palestinians demand for their future state, in an intensified effort to set a foundation that would allow the resumption of long-stalled negotiations to end the decades-old Israeli-Palestinian conflict. 

Nevertheless, TV7 learned that negotiations between the US administration and Jerusalem regarding restraining construction in Israeli settlements will not continue as of now after the Israeli and American negotiating teams failed to reach an understanding or agreement in the last round of talks. In the wake of the failed negotiations, Prime Minister Netanyahu decided to adopt a new policy taking the positions of President Donald Trump into account, in which Israel would exercise a greatly restrained policy in the West Bank and that the establishment of illegal outposts will not be permitted. Nevertheless, Prime Minister Netanyahu declared that construction in existing settlements, which Israel defines as major bloc’s that would remain under its sovereignty in any future agreement, would be permitted and even accelerated.