Palestinian PM urges serious measures against Israeli settlements

Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammed Ishtaye has called on the donor countries to take more serious measures to boycott the Israeli settlements.

“The real situation is deteriorating due to Israel’s policies of expanding settlements in the Palestinian territories,” Xinhua news agency quoted Ishtaye as saying during an online meeting of the international donors on Wednesday.

A statement issued by Ishtaye’s office in Ramallah said that he told the meeting “due to these policies, the Palestinian land is shrinking, settler violence is escalating, and the access to our resources decreases daily”.

According to the statement, Norway chaired the meeting for around 40 donor countries and international institutions, including the UN and the World Bank.

“The meeting discussed the political and financial developments in the Palestinian territories and the preparations for the donors’ conference, which is scheduled to be held in Oslo in February next year,” the statement said.

Meanwhile, Ishtaye explained that “economic development in Palestine is not separate from the political and national goals”.

“Economic developments along with achieving the national and political goals for the Palestinians would lead to ending the occupation and establishing the Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital,” the Prime Minister added.

According to the Palestine Liberation Organization, about 124 Israeli settlement outposts have been built in the West Bank since the 1990s without any official Israeli approval.

Palestinian rights groups said about 700,000 settlers have been living in the West Bank and East Jerusalem since 1967.

The Israeli settlements built on the Palestinian territories are regarded as illegal by the international community.

However in 2019, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that Washington no longer considered Israeli settlements as inconsistent with international law.