OTTAWA – The Green Party of Canada is disturbed by recent reports that Israel’s new coalition government intends to annex significant parts of the West Bank Palestinian territories, occupied by Israel since 1967.
“If this goes ahead, it will represent one of the single most extreme unilateral moves made by Israel in recent decades in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,” said Paul Manly (MP, Nanaimo-Ladysmith), the Green caucus critic on foreign affairs. “An annexation of Palestinian lands in the midst of the global COVID-19 crisis would not only violate UN Security Council resolution 242 (UNSC 242) but several other resolutions as well. It would also end all hopes for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”
UNSC 242 refers to the “inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war and the need to work for a just and lasting peace in the Middle East in which every State in the area can live in security.”
Mr. Manly points out that the area targeted in the annexation plan includes occupied lands in the Jordan River valley. “Taking such reckless action would threaten Israel’s quarter-century-old peace agreement with Jordan,” he said. “It would undermine the stability of the government of Jordan’s King Abdullah II, who is already under intense internal political pressures. Weakening the Jordanian government and ending Jordan’s peace with Israel would further destabilize the entire Middle East region.”
During a visit to Ukraine in 2016, Prime Minister Trudeau condemned Russia’s annexation of Crimea and its failure to abide by the Minsk Accord. Two years earlier, in 2014, Canada imposed sanctions in response to the Russian occupation and annexation of Crimea.
“The Green Party caucus has written to the prime minister asking him to apply the same principles cited by successive Canadian administrations in regard to the Russian occupation and annexation of Crimea, to any Israeli plan to annex further occupied Palestinian territories,” said Mr. Manly.
Green parliamentary leader Elizabeth May is on the executive of the Canada-Palestinian Parliamentary Friendship Group. “I am deeply concerned with the plight of the Palestinian people in this time of pandemic,” said Ms. May. ‘It is unacceptable that Israel would attempt to use COVID-19 as cover for further compromising the long term security of the region.”
“Canada must not stand idly by and allow Israel to violate international law with impunity,” said Green Party Interim Leader Jo-Ann Roberts. “Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has repeatedly affirmed his support for a two-state solution. The Green Party urges the federal government to raise this matter with Canada’s international partners, and pressure Israel to back down from this dangerous plan.”
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