Just days ago, the US Secretary of State issued strong criticism concerning Israel’s plans to expand settlements, and now a host of European countries are backing his sentiment.
Earlier this week, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken issued strong criticism towards Israel’s plans to expand its settlement in the West Bank (Judea & Samaria). According to several reports, the Secretary of State strongly opposed the plans of the Jewish State in a phone call with Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz.
Just one day after the US voiced its opposition, the Israeli government approved plans to construct over 3,000 new homes in the West Bank.
Later this week after the opposition was voiced by the US, a dozen European countries followed suit in the same condemnation. These countries include Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain, and Sweden. Unfortunately, though it is not the case, one would think that the primary concern of these nations would be Islamic extremism and Iran’s pursuit of a nuclear weapon.
The 12 foreign ministries stated, “We urge the Government of Israel to reverse its decision to advance plans for the construction of around 3,000 settlement units in the West Bank.”
As if limiting settlement construction throughout Israel has led to peace in the past or progress concerning a two-state solution, they added, “We reiterate our strong opposition to its policy of settlement expansion across the Occupied Palestinian Territories, which violates international law and undermines efforts for the two-state solution.”
According to reports, the phone call between Blinken and Gantz was quite tense. And according to one Israeli official, “The U.S. gave us a yellow card,” or a warning.