US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday expressed his deep concern regarding the Israeli decision to approve illegal Jewish settler outposts in the occupied West Bank retroactively, referring to it as a move that the United States does not support. His statement was made less than two weeks after his visit to the region, during which he voiced his disagreement with such actions.
Blinken expressed his vehement disagreement with the unilateral measures that have only served to heighten the tensions and weaken the chances of a two–state solution being negotiated. He reiterated his request for all parties to abstain from taking any action that could potentially worsen the Israeli–Palestinian conflict.
On Sunday, the Israeli occupation authorized the legitimization of nine settler outposts and the construction of new housing within established settlements, following a period of prolonged unrest in the West Bank.
The European Union in a statement has firmly rejected this decision and stated that according to international law, settlements are illegal, and that any changes to the 1967 borders must be mutually agreed upon by the parties involved. Furthermore, the EU has urged the Israeli occupation to put a stop to settlement construction and to reverse this latest decision without delay.
The EU also expressed its deep concern about the heightened tensions and increased violence. In this troubling context, it is essential to take steps to de–escalate the situation and prevent any unilateral decisions or actions that could undermine the potential of a two–state resolution to the conflict and exacerbate tensions even further.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry on Monday also voiced its disapproval of the Israeli decision to legalize nine settlement outposts in the West Bank.
The ministry expressed their disapproval of the Israeli occupation’s announcement on Sunday to authorize and grow nine settlement outposts in the West Bank, which are deemed illegal according to the international law.
The ministry highlighted the fact that recent single–sided actions have heightened tensions in the region, and expressed grave concern over the “extremely worrying developments and mounting civilian casualties in the West Bank“, which have damaged the grounds for a perpetual peace.
There are approximately 650,000 Israeli settlers living in 164 illegal settlements and 116 illegal outposts located in the West Bank.
According to international law, all Jewish settlements in the territories that have been occupied are considered to be unlawful.