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June 12th, 2020

NDP calls on government to up pressure on Israel to stop annexation and pursue negotiations on Palestine

ST. JOHN'S – Two developments this week provide an opportunity and a need for the Canadian government to increase pressure on the Israeli government to stop its plan to annex Palestinian territory in contradiction to International Law.

“It is not enough for Canada to simply express its concern or denounce the Israeli government's annexation plans,” said New Democrat Foreign Affairs Critic, Jack Harris (St. John's East). “We must take action with other nations to uphold International Law and the Human Rights of the Palestinian people."

On Tuesday, Israel's Supreme Court overruled a 2017 law that had legalized approximately 4,000 settler homes built on privately-owned Palestinian land in the West Bank.

This Supreme Court decision makes some 50 settler communities illegal under Israeli law, in addition to international law.

This week, the Palestinian Authority sent international mediators a counter proposal for an "independent and demilitarized Palestinian state" and an offer to exchange lands with Israel.

The proposal comes in opposition to the US Middle East Plan and may provide a real opportunity for renewed negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians to find a solution.

"These developments create even more room for Canada to work with other countries to dissuade the Israeli government from proceeding with their illegal plans to annex the occupied West Bank and to instead seek more equitable negotiations with Palestinians," said Harris.