Fayyad urges UN to press Israel on fence

Palestinian Authority marks five years since Hague ruling condemning separation barrier, calls on international community to intervene. ‘Israel continues to challenge the international ruling through the ‘Judaization’ of Jerusalem and the expansion of the settlements,” Palestinian PM Fayyad’s government says.

The Palestinian Authority called on the United Nations, the United States, and the international community on Wednesday to pressure Israel into dismantling the separation barrier in the West Bank.

The call was issued by the government in Ramallah as it marked five years since the International Court of Justice at The Hague ruled the fence illegal and claimed that Israel was in blatant violation of the international community’s demands.

Five years ago a special judicial panel ruled that the separation barrier constitutes an illegal land grab. The decision was backed by the UN General Assembly, which adopted the court’s ruling and also demanded Israel immediately cease all construction work.

“The court’s decision, which was endorsed by the UN General Assembly, determines that the fence and the settlements, including east Jerusalem, are illegal,” Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad’s government said at the conclusion of its weekly meeting. “We demand that the UN Security Council and secretary-general work towards ensuring that Israel implements the court’s decision.”

‘World Bank must withdraw funding’

The PA accused Israel of ignoring the ruling. “‘Israel continues to challenge the international ruling through the ‘Judaization’ of Jerusalem and the expansion of the settlements, which have doubled over the past five years.
This is just one tier of the Israeli policy to ethnically cleanse the Palestinian territories, especially in the Jordan River Valley. The US administration and the international community must take a strong stance against this policy.”

The PA also said it would ask the World Bank to stop funding studies for a Dead Sea-Red Sea water project if Israel did not withdraw plans to expropriate 35,000 acres of land in the Dead Sea region with the intent of annexing the territory to Ma’ale Adumim.

Fayyad’s cabinet demanded that the Quartet take a clear and determined stand against the plan, saying that it would rob the Palestinians of their rights to the Jordan River’s waters. It would also divide territorial Continuity, “destroying any possibility for the establishment of a viable Palestinian state.”

The cabinet said that if Israel “does not halt this plan, the Palestinian National Authority will ask the World Bank to stop the two-seas project, linking the Red Sea with the Dead Sea.”

The cabinet also thanked the European Union for claiming earlier this week that Israeli settlements are suffocating the Palestinian economy.