Palestinian MP Blasts Int’l Silence over Settlement Expansion
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – A member of the Palestinian legislative body condemned the international community's silence in the face of relentless expansion of Jewish settlements on occupied land, saying such a policy could embolden Israel to usurp more of Palestinian lands.
“This silence of the countries that have relations with that regime (Tel Aviv), particularly the US and the EU, is a kind of cover up for Tel Aviv’s moves, and gives Israel the green light to commit aggressive moves, seize more lands of the Palestinians, and build more settlements,” Dr. Salem Salamah told Tasnim on Saturday.
According to him, the silence of the Arab world and the freedom seekers towards the aggressive moves of the Zionist regime is to the benefit of the US and that regime.
The Palestinian lawmaker said that under such conditions resistance is the only option for the Palestinian nation, through which, he hoped, they can regain their lost rights, free the occupied al-Quds (Jerusalem) and their occupied lands.
The resistance groups in Palestine, which are mainly centered in the Gaza Strip, are against any deal with Israel that falls short of their aspiration of liberating all Palestinian lands occupied by the Zionist regime.
But the Palestinian Authority led by Mahmoud Abbas is in talk with Israel for a Palestinian state within pre-1967 borders, with East al-Quds (Jerusalem) as its capital. But more than 200 settlements and outposts in the West Bank including in East al-Quds (Jerusalem) that have dotted their land and house more than 500,000 Jews make that dream ever more elusive. The settlements are considered illegal under international law.
And to the disappointment of the Palestinians who want their own state, Israel keeps building more housing units in the illegal settlements and has refused to accept pre-1967 borders.
Israeli prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has rejected any return to the pre-1967 lines as "indefensible", saying it would not take into account the demographic changes on the ground.
Return of palestinian refugees to their homeland and the status of East al-Quds, which the Palestinians want as the capital of their future, independent state are other daunting issues to be addressed in negotiations.
The direct Israeli-Palestinian peace talks launched in July have shown little sign of progress. A previous round of negotiations collapsed in September 2010 in a bitter row over Israeli settlements.
The United Nations says chances for a negotiated two-state deal ending the decades-long Israeli-Palestinian conflict may be "irreparably damaged" unless Israel stops new settlement construction in the occupied West Bank.