Following Secretary of State Pompeo’s announcement that “The establishment of Israeli civilian settlements in the West Bank is not per se inconsistent with international law,” the New Israel Fund released the following statement:
The announcement that the U.S. will no longer consider Israeli settlements to be inconsistent with international law is a significant deviation from previous US policy, a slap in the face to human rights defenders in Israel and the West Bank, and a devastating blow for all those who seek justice and democracy.
This announcement can only lead to more expropriation of Palestinian land, dispossession, and annexation. Any unilateral annexation in the occupied territories would gravely damage Israel’s democracy.
Trump has handed not only Netanyahu but the full spectrum of extreme right-wing activists a victory and weakened the hand of those Israelis and Palestinians who believe in basic rights for all. Today, the American State Department formally adopted the settler narrative.