Thursday, January 16, 2014

News the HP Doesn't Cover: Australian FM Says Not to Call Settlement Illegal

This statement probably won't change minds on either side of the issues discussed, but it's always nice to hear and we thank Julie Bishop for her support of Israel:
In a rare show of support for Israel’s settlement enterprise, Australia’s foreign minister has said that the international community should refrain from calling settlements illegal under international law, without waiting for their status to be determined in a deal with the Palestinians.In an exclusive interview with The Times of Israel, Julie Bishop suggested that, contrary to conventional diplomatic wisdom, the settlements may not be illegal under international law. She refrained from condemning Israeli initiatives to build additional housing units beyond the Green Line or from calling on Israel to freeze such plans, merely saying the fact that settlements were being expanded showed the need for the sides to quickly reach a peace agreement.“I don’t want to prejudge the fundamental issues in the peace negotiations,” Bishop said. “The issue of settlements is absolutely and utterly fundamental to the negotiations that are under way and I think it’s appropriate that we give those negotiations every chance of succeeding.”Asked whether she agrees or disagrees with the near-universal view that Israeli settlements anywhere beyond the 1967 lines are illegal under international law, she replied: “I would like to see which international law has declared them illegal.”

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