Saeb Erekat, the Secretary-General of the Palestine Liberation Organization, has said that the US and Israel were “partnering” in annexation plans through an ongoing settlement construction.
“(US President Donald) Trump’s administration is now partnering with Israel, through the recently formed annexation committee, with its new announcements for more construction and expansion of Israel’s illegal colonial settlements on lands belonging to the state of Palestine,” Xinhua news agency quoted Erekat as saying in a statement on Thursday.
Erekat’s remarks came against the backdrop of Israel’s latest decision to build 5,200 new settlement units in the south of Jerusalem, in addition to approving a plan to build 9,000 new units in the north of the city.
“The ongoing Israeli settlement announcements represent the implementation of Trump’s (Middle East peace) plan, which requires urgent international action to deter both Israel and the US from their continued violations of international law and order,” Erekat said.
On February 12, Palestinian President Mahmud Abbas urged the UN Security Council to reject President Donald Trump’s Middle East plan and said it would splinter Palestinian lands and never bring lasting peace.
The draft no longer calls for an international conference on the Middle East “at the earliest possible date,” instead, replacing that language with a reminder that such a call was made in a 2008 UN resolution.
On January 28, President Trump unveiled his long-awaited Middle East peace plan, envisaging a two-state solution but keeping Jerusalem as Israel’s undivided capital.
According to the diplomats, the United States has put heavy pressure, including threats of financial repercussions, on Security Council members and that even some European nations were hesitant.
However, the Palestinian leader has won a show of support as he met in New York with Netanyahu’s predecessor Ehud Olmert, who said that any negotiations needed to involve Abbas.
The Palestinians previously won support from the Arab League, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation and the African Union which have all rejected Trump’s plan.
(With inputs from agency)