Israel’s plan to apply sovereignty to any part of the West Bank will end the two-state solution and eliminate the possibility of establishing an independent, sovereign and geographically viable Palestinian state, Palestinian Authority Foreign Minister Riyad Malki said Thursday.
In a speech before an emergency videoconference meeting of the Arab League foreign ministers, he said if implemented, the Israeli plan would also place al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem under Israeli control “before it is demolished and replaced by the ostensible Temple.”
The meeting was held at the request of the Palestinians to discuss the “dangers” of the Israeli plan.
The Arab ministers condemned the plan as a “new war crime” and “flagrant violation of United Nations resolutions and international law.” They urged the US administration to back away from supporting the plan and said the Arab countries will support by all political, diplomatic, legal and financial means any decisions taken by the Palestinians to confront it.
The foreign ministers also called on the Quartet (US, Russia, EU and UN) to convene an urgent meeting to save the chances of peace and a two-state solution and to take a position consistent with international decisions to compel Israel to “stop implementing its colonial plans, including annexation and settlement expansion.”
Malki warned that if the Israeli plan is implemented, it would “transform the conflict from a political to a religious conflict that will go on forever because the Palestinians would not accept it and won’t accept anything less than the borders of 1967 to establish their state, with East Jerusalem as its capital.”
The Israeli plan to apply sovereignty to any part of the West Bank “would never guarantee stability, security and peace,” he said.Malki accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of exploiting the coronavirus pandemic “to pass his decisions to annex large parts of the occupied Palestinian territory to Israel.”
He also urged the Arab states to provide financial aid to the Palestinians as they face difficult financial conditions “due to the restrictions of the occupation.”
Any Israeli decision to annex parts of the West Bank would not change the status of these lands, Arab League Secretary-General Ahmed Aboul Gheit said in a speech during the meeting, adding that they will remain “occupied territories in accordance with international law.”
The purpose of Thursday’s meeting was to warn about the “dangers of the Israeli schemes to annex parts of the West Bank and the possible repercussions on regional stability,” he said.
Aboul Gheit also accused the Israeli government of exploiting the preoccupation of the world with the coronavirus pandemic to establish new facts on the ground.