Israel’s annexation is the final nail in the coffin for the peace process or any prospect of a Palestinian state

The territory is a fertile strip of land, home to 65,000 Palestinians and 11,000 settlers and it constitutes half of the agricultural land providing food security to Palestinians

Israel plans to annex 30% more land of Palestinian State. The annexation of the West Bank by the Israeli occupation is not only another blow to the peace process. Rather, it is the announcement of elimination of peace process by Israel. It surely reflects that there is hardly any chance for a Palestinian state.

The proposed Israeli-American plan would annex around 30% of the occupied West Bank on July 1st. It  includes the Jordan Valley and the Jewish settlements in the West bank. These settlements are fundamentally illegal as it violates the Fourth Geneva Convention.

The plan also comes in accordance with US president Donald Trump’s ‘Deal of the Century.” Palestinians strongly oppose it since its revelation to the international community in late January.

“The annexation is not less dangerous than the 1948 war (Nakba) to Palestinians,” Adnan Abu Amer, a Palestinian analyst said. “It is a new Nakba (catastrophe) for its political, security, military and social draconian consequences on the Palestinian cause,” he added. It will separate more Palestinian families and annex more Palestinian lands. Moreover, it abandons Palestinian security and social rights as residents would be granted neither citizenship nor equal rights. Above all, it ends any hope of having any independent  Palestinian state.

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The willing Palestinian state is an independent state in the West Bank, East Jerusalem, the Gaza Strip, and the territories Israel captured in a 1967 Middle East war.  

Why Israel seeks to annex Jordan Valley?

Israel has always wanted to annex the Jordan Valley due to its strategic importance. The territory is a fertile strip of land, home to 65,000 Palestinians and 11,000 settlers and it constitutes half of the agricultural land providing food security to Palestinians.

The annexation of Jordan Valley means something specific. It means that the Palestinians will be cut off from the Jordan River. It feeds more than 80,000 hectares of agricultural land, a move that would jeopardize Palestinian food and water security. The Jordan valley marks the boundary between Jordan and Israel and between Jordan and the Occupied West Bank. 

Researcher Nehal Alju’aidi explains that Israel took advantage of the world distraction with Covid-19. As there are millions of cases spanning the globe and the rapid deaths of thousands daily. Obscured by the tragic pandemic confronting the planet, Israel will implement its plan.

She also added that there are two scenarios related to the future of Palestinian residents in these areas. They may have to leave their lands by all means otherwise they will stay and face treatment as a third-class citizen. 

How Palestinians feel?

Have you been ousted from your own land ever? May be you can never understand this on how Palestinians feel. They’re being ousted from their homes, lands and agricultural produce by an occupying force. No one can understand how ousting from ones own home feels like.

Since the announcing of this plan, Palestinians have strongly rejected the plan and voiced outrage at Israel’s proposed annexation. There were several rallies and online campaigns against the decision. There are other plans to protest the annexation. In its term, the Palestinian Authority threatened to terminate all security agreements and cooperation with Israel and United States as well. It includes call to put sanctions on Israel and to recognize the State of Palestine. Some Palestinians feel disappointed of the Palestinian Authority’s reaction to this dangerous move by Israel. 

International Reaction

Several Arab and European countries including the UK, France, Germany, Turkey and Ireland condemn this step and consider it as a flagrant violation of international law.

Overall, 50 independent United Nations human rights experts gave a joint statement on Tuesday. “The annexation of occupied territory is a serious violation of the Charter of the United Nations and the Geneva Conventions. And contrary to the fundamental rule affirm many times by the United Nations Security Council and General Assembly that the acquisition of territory by war or force is inadmissible,” it states.

In Israel also, left-wing groups took the streets on Saturday against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s plan to extend sovereignty over parts of the occupied West Bank. They consider it as the end of having peace for the Palestinians and Israelis. 

Analysts warn of possible wave of outrage and diplomatic repercussions, so they expect Israel will annex the lands gradually to avoid the people outrage.    

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