Top Palestinain negotiator Saeb Erekat condemned Israel for holding its weekly cabinet meeting on Sunday in the Western Wall tunnels, an archaeological site in the Old City.
Government ministers convened their cabinet meeting in the Western Wall tunnels to mark 50 years since the IDF captured the site during the Six-Day War. At the meeting, the ministers announced a five-year development plan for Jerusalem. “The Israeli Government has decided to mark 50 years occupation, and the beginning of the Holy Month of Ramadan, by sending a clear message to the Palestinian people that the systematic violations of their inalienable rights are going to continue,” Erekat said.Israel considers all of Jerusalem including the Western Wall tunnels to be under its sovereignty. The Palestinian leadership holds that the tunnels are a part of its territory. Both sides have negotiated the status of the site in previous negotiations. Erekat also called on countries, which he said are allowing Israel to undertake “illegal actions,” to hold it accountable. “It is no longer acceptable that after 50 years of the Israeli occupation, for countries to claim to support the two-state solution while giving assurances to Israel that there will be no consequences for its illegal actions,” he remarked, without naming the said countries.
Netanyahu speaks at a cabinet meeting in the Western Wall (credit: GPO)