Israel reportedly demolished 132 Palestinian structures in January alone, representing a 135% increase in comparison to the same period last year.
Qatar has strongly condemned the Israeli government’s legalisation of settlement outposts and expansions in the occupied West Bank on Monday amid growing calls for accountability.
“This step is a flagrant violation of the United Nations Charter, the principles of international law, and relevant United Nations resolutions. It is also a flagrant violation of the rights of the brotherly Palestinian people,” the Gulf state’s foreign ministry said in a statement.
The statement also expressed concern over ongoing Israeli violations, saying they “will undermine international efforts aimed at implementing the two-state solution.”
“It also calls on the international community to shoulder its responsibilities to compel Israel to stop its settlement policy in the occupied Palestinian territories,” the statement added, renewing Doha’s calls for an independent Palestinian state on the 1967 borders.
The statement came after the Israeli cabinet agreed to legalise nine settlement outposts in the occupied West Bank, which violate international law and UN Security Council resolutions.
The occupation’s government also voted to connect water and electricity services to outposts, further increasing Israel’s grip over basic resources that Palestinians have struggled to receive for decades.
In a statement, Palestinian presidential spokesperson Nabil Abu Rudainah condemned the decision, saying it disregards both “American and Arab efforts” while provoking Palestinians.
Similarly, the Palestinian foreign ministry slammed the decision as a “state-sanctioned crime”, warning “that Israel’s declared annexationist policies violate the territorial integrity and independence of the State of Palestine”.
“Israel’s illegal occupation and settlement enterprise are the source of this protracted injustice. Israel, the occupying Power, must dismantle its settlement enterprise, in totality, and end its illegal occupation,” it added.
The European Union has also joined in the global condemnation of the decision.
“The European Union rejects this decision and reiterates its position that settlements are illegal under international law and that it will not recognize any changes to the 1967 borders other than those agreed by the parties,” the EU said.
Palestinians continue to be forced out of their homes as Israel expands its settlements to make way for more Jewish settlers. Protected by occupation forces, Israeli settlers regularly and violently attack Palestinians as well as their homes.
More than half a million Israelis already occupy more than 200 settlements, forcing out thousands. Palestinians are also regularly forced to demolish their own homes to make way for such areas.
On Monday, UN experts said Israel must be held accountable for acts of “domicide”, a term that refers to deliberate dispossession of people.
“The systematic demolition of Palestinian homes, erection of illegal Israeli settlements and systematic denial of building permits for Palestinians in the occupied West Bank amounts to ‘domicide’,” the experts said, as quoted by Palestine’s news agency.
According to Wafa, Israel reportedly demolished 132 Palestinian structures in January alone, representing a 135% increase in comparison to the same period last year.
In Masafer Yatta, more than 1,100 Palestinians are at imminent risk of forced dispossession.
“In occupied East Jerusalem, tens of Palestinian families also face imminent risks of forced evictions and displacement, due to discriminatory zoning and planning regimes that favor Israeli settlement expansion,” the experts noted.