Israel’s recent Settlement Announcement a Slap on Kerry’s Face, says Erekat

RAMALLAH, November 4, 2014 (WAFA) – Palestinian chief negotiator Saeb Erekat said on Monday the recent Israeli announcement for the construction of new settlement units in Jerusalem, ‘is a slap in the face to Secretary Kerry, to the international community, to the Palestinian people, and to peace, said a statement issued by the PLO egotiations affairs department.


Erekat’s statement came as he met with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in Washington in an effort to help create the right environment to achieve the two-state solution.


The remarks were in response to the Israeli government’s approval of the construction of 640 new illegal housing units in Ramat Shlomo settlement in East Jerusalem, the capital of the State of Palestine.


“The message is clear: the Netanyahu government chooses settlements over negotiations, colonization over the two-state solution, and apartheid over equality and coexistence,” said Erekat.


He urged the international community to exert actual measures, stressing that “statements alone will not stop Israeli settlements, protect the Palestinian people, or save the two-state solution.”


Erekat called on the international community to hold Israel accountable for its ongoing violations of international law and signed agreements, including its dramatic escalation of violations against our people in Occupied East Jerusalem.


“The international community must support our right to access international treaties and organizations, including the Rome Statue,” he stressed.


The official called upon all countries to “extend diplomatic recognition to the State of Palestine on the 1967 border,” adding, “We urge the international community, including the American administration, to support our initiative for a Security Council resolution that would set a deadline for ending the Israeli occupation.”


He said that, “Diplomatic recognition and support for this resolution are investments in peace needed to save the two-state solution from vanishing once and for all.”