Wennesland condemns killing of 4 Israeli civilians, as Security Council hears ‘little progress’ is being made on settlements |

The 2016 resolution describes Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, which, according to the 1967 borders, include East Jerusalem, as a clear violation of international law and an obstacle to any two-way solution. State in the future.

‘Does not justify’ acts of terrorism

The meeting coincided with the murder of four Israeli civilians – including two women – in a stabbing and stabbing attack by an Israeli Arab in Be’er Sheva, southern Israel, which he Wennesland “strongly condemns” in a related statement.

“There is no justification for violence or terrorism,” the Special Coordinator emphasized through the statement. “There is nothing heroic in killing civilians and there is no reason to praise such actions.” They must be condemned by all.

Emphasizing that this was the seventh attack on Israelis this month, he said these tragic incidents only highlight the urgent need for all leaders to come together to combat the spiral of violence. .


In his press conference before the Council, Mr. Wennesland singled out Israel’s settlement expansion as a cause of violence in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, continued aggression and undermining the right to self-determination and independent Palestinian state.

Presenting the 21st report on 2334 . resolution (2016), covering December 10 to March 18, the Special Coordinator notes that 670,000 Israeli citizens currently reside in more than 130 illegal settlements and more than 100 outposts in the West Bank. occupied, including East Jerusalem.

To be sure, “Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, have no legal validity,” he explained.

Expansion of the settlement

Against this backdrop, Mr. Wennesland noted that on January 5, Israel announced a tender for 300 settlement housing units in the East Talpiyot neighborhood of East Jerusalem, with the Jerusalem District Planning Commission subsequently moving forward. plans to build 800 and 400 housing units in the East, respectively. Jerusalem the settlement of Gilo.

In addition, he said the Israeli Justice Minister on February 1 published a legal opinion allowing the authorities to declare the land in the Evyatar outpost as “State land” and allowing planning procedures are accelerated to establish a settlement there.

On February 28, the Jerusalem District Planning Commission planned for about 700 housing units in the settlement of Pisgat Ze’ev in East Jerusalem.

Daily violence

As for the resolution’s call for parties to prevent attacks on civilians, the Special Coordinator said: “Unfortunately, everyday violence continues.”

24 Palestinians were killed by Israeli security forces during protests, clashes, security operations, attacks and alleged attacks against Israelis, during the reporting period. In addition, Israeli settlers or other civilians perpetrated 144 attacks against Palestinians.

In total, Palestinians carried out 277 attacks against Israeli civilians.

Negative trend reversal

At the same time, Mr. Wennesland welcomed the steps taken to “reverse the negative trend”, citing Qatar’s December 27 agreement with the Palestinian Authority and the Gaza Power Distribution Corporation, to promote construction natural gas pipeline from Israel to Gaza.

In Gaza, he remarked that Israel has authorized licensing for about 12,000 Palestinian merchants and traders. In January, the daily movement of workers, merchants and entrepreneurs across the Erez intersection was the highest since 2007.

A call to calm

Mr. Wennesland recognizes that the absence of a meaningful peace process to end the Israeli occupation and resolve the conflict, is fueling the dangerous deterioration that is destabilizing the situation throughout the Palestinian Territories. invaded.

Ahead of Ramadan, Pesach and Easter – a time of “reflection, prayer and celebration of peace” for all religions – he urged parties to abide by international law and bilateral agreements, to end the occupation.

“Leaders on all sides have an important role to play in ensuring calm.

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