Abbas labels Israeli settlement law an 'attack' on Palestinians
DOMINIQUE FAGET / AFP
Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas on Tuesday labelled the new Israeli law legalizing dozens of Jewish outposts built on private Palestinian land an "attack against our people".
Israel faced broad international criticism over the new law, passed by parliament on Monday, including from Britain, France, the United Nations and its neighbor Jordan. The United States has not commented.
"Our goal is peace, but Israel is working from the basis of a single state," he added.
Speaking alongside Abbas at a press conference in Paris, French President Francois Hollande said: "I want to believe that Israel and its government will reconsider this law."
Prior to the meeting, French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault issued a statement condemning the legislation which "regulates thousands of housing units that were built on private Palestinian land in the West Bank. This law perpetuates especially the existence of dozens of settlements and outposts and gives a constitutional basis for development in the future."
Referring to a resolution passed at the UN Security Council in December, Ayrault said that Israel should be clearly reminded that settlement in all its forms is illegal in the eyes of international law."
"This law infringes on advancing the two-state solution. As 75 countries and organizations mentioned on January 15 in Paris, it is the only solution that can bring about a just and lasting peace in the Middle East."
The foreign minister went on to say that the law could "exacerbate tensions in the region," and called on Israel "to respect its international obligations and rescind the law."
Ahead of the meeting between the two leaders, Palestinian foreign minister Riyad al-Malki said that the controversial legislation to "legitimize the settlements and stealing of Palestinian land" would be the main issue discussed.
Abbas was also be briefed, according to media reports, on the results of an international peace summit on the Israeli-Palestinian hosted by France in January, which neither Israels nor the Palestinians attended.
A joint declaration released after the conference called on both sides to officially restate their commitment to the two-state solution, with participants resolving to meet before the end of 2017 in support of the two-state solution.
The Palestinians on Monday, however, slammed Israel's settlement regulation bill as spelling death for prospects of ending the long-simmering conflict.
"The passing of the law kills the two-state solution," Abbas adviser Aosam Zumlot said Tuesday ahead of the Paris meet.
Dr. Mohammas Ishtayee, a member of Abbas' Fatah faction executive committee, said that "the international community should shoulder its responsibility toward the Palestinian people."
The Palestinians have as of late attempted to use international diplomacy to pressure Israel to reaching a solution to the conflict. Israel has rejected international involvement in the peace process, maintaining that only direct, bilateral talks with the Palestinians would lead to an agreement.
France was among 14 members of the United Nations Security Council which in December voted in favor of a resolution condemning Israel's settlement policy. The United States, led then by former president Barack Obama, made rare and momentous abstention enabling the resolution's passing.
But U.S. policy has become less clear in the 17 days since the inauguration of President Donald Trump, and on Monday the State Department refused to take a position on the regulation bill.
Palestinian foreign minister al-Maliki said its refusal to comment indicates "that the Trump administration is unable to assume responsibility regarding the theft of Palestinian land."
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Attacks from terrorist palistinians has earned this for them. Negotiate or get out of Judea and sammaria