RNA - Back in April, and days before Israeli general elections, the Israeli premier had made a similar pledge in an attempt to secure votes from hard-line Israelis, but the fragile parliamentary majority that emerged after the elections left him incapable of forming a cabinet, and he was forced to call repeat elections.
Netanyahu and his Likud party are now attempting to attract votes from the supporters of other right-wing parties that are also in favor of settlement construction.
Speaking to an audience at the West Bank settlement of Elkana on Sunday, Netanyahu broadly said, “We will apply Jewish sovereignty to all communities.”
Palestinians see the West Bank as part of a future independent Palestinian state with East Jerusalem al-Quds as its capital, but Israel, which occupied the West Bank in the Six-Day War of 1967, insists on maintaining the occupation of Palestinian territories.
International law regards Israeli settlements in the occupied West bank as illegal.
Shortly after Netanyahu’s pledge, Saeb Erekat, the secretary general of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), lambasted his comments and called on the international community to take action.
“Those who claim concern after every Israeli settlement announcement should face reality: Israel’s PM is announcing further annexation of occupied territory,” Erekat wrote on Twitter.
“Enough impunity: There’s an international responsibility to impose sanctions on Israel after decades of systematic crimes,” he added.
According to Press TV, separately, Nabil Abu Rdainah, a spokesman for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, also denounced Netanyahu’s announcement and called it the “continuation of attempts to create an unacceptable fait accompli that will not lead to any peace, security or stability.”
Earlier this year, US President Donald Trump recognized Israeli “sovereignty” over the Golan Heights, a Syrian territory under Israeli occupation since 1967. In December 2017, Trump also recognized the whole of Jerusalem al-Quds as Israel’s “capital.”
About 600,000 Israelis live in over 230 illegal settlements built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East Jerusalem al-Quds.