BERLIN, September 3, 2014 – (WAFA) – Germany slammed Tuesday Israel’s decision to expropriate about 400 hectares of Palestinian land in occupied West Bank, considering new settlements as an obstacle to the peace process and two-state solution.
In an online press release issued by the German Federal Foreign Office, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier ‘regretted’ the Israeli decision in order to facilitate the construction of further settlements.
“The decision – should it be upheld – would send the wrong message at the wrong time. The German Government hopes that it will be reversed,” stated Steinmeier.
Affirming his country’s standpoint on Israel’s settlement policy, he stated: “The German Government’s standpoint on Israel’s settlement policy is well‑known: the settlement construction in the occupied territories violates international law.”
“The building of new settlements will not serve to further the peace process and the two‑state solution. Steps such as this make it even more difficult to find a way back to peace negotiations to prevent the human tragedy of the last few weeks being repeated in the near future.”
Steinmeier called on the two sides to “do everything they can to build trust and refrain from taking unilateral, provocative action,” stressing that “a negotiated two‑state solution remains the only option which offers the prospect of lasting peace.”