Pompeo: Israeli Settlements No Longer Viewed as Illegal by US

November 18, 2019

‘The Trump administration is reversing the Obama administration’s approach’

US Will No Longer View Israeli Settlements as Illegal, Pompeo Announces

November 18, 2019

 

In what can be seen as a major boost to U.S.–Israel relations, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that the United States will no longer view Israeli settlements as illegal under international law.

“The Trump administration is reversing the Obama administration’s approach towards Israeli settlements,” he said on Nov. 18 at the White House. “The U.S. public statements on settlement activities in the West Bank have been inconsistent over decades.”

“The establishment of Israeli settlements in the West Bank is not, per se, inconsistent with international law.”

Pompeo said calling the settlements inconsistent with international law has done nothing to bring peace in the region.

“After carefully studying all sides of the legal debate, this administration agrees with President Reagan,” Pompeo said, referring to former President Ronald Reagan’s position that Israeli West Bank settlements weren’t inherently illegal.

Meanwhile, Pompeo said the policy change hasn’t been driven by domestic political issues, and he’s not concerned that the United States will be isolated over the move.

“We have encouraged nations to stand up for the State of Israel, so I don’t think the decision increases the isolation,” he said.

The issue over settlements can only be resolved by the Israelis and Palestinians, he added, urging both sides to cooperate in the future on a peace solution.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu hailed the announcement.

“Today, the United States adopted an important policy that rights a historical wrong, when the Trump administration clearly rejected the false claim that Israeli settlements in Judea and Samaria are inherently illegal under international law,” his office said in a statement obtained by the Times of Israel.

“This policy reflects a historical truth—that the Jewish people are not foreign colonialists in Judea and Samaria. In fact, we are called Jews because we are the people of Judea,” he said.

The move drew a rebuke from Israel’s top Arab lawmaker, Ayman Odeh, who said the policy change won’t “change the fact that the settlements were built on occupied land upon which an independent Palestinian state will be founded alongside Israel,” The Associated Press reported.


 

As a citizen journalist and investigative reporter, I am committed to accurately reporting the news. Wide awake, never asleep, I grew up in a 1960’s patriotic household, aware of the truth behind the false narrative. ~  Bonnie Nirgude’ for C-Vine News

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