Canada Urges Israel to Reverse Decision to Approve New West Bank Settlements

This picture taken  on June 28, 2024 , shows a view of construction cranes at Ramat Shlomo, a Jewish settlement in the Israeli-annexed eastern sector of Jerusalem. (Photo by AHMAD GHARABLI / AFP)
This picture taken on June 28, 2024 , shows a view of construction cranes at Ramat Shlomo, a Jewish settlement in the Israeli-annexed eastern sector of Jerusalem. (Photo by AHMAD GHARABLI / AFP)
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Canada Urges Israel to Reverse Decision to Approve New West Bank Settlements

This picture taken  on June 28, 2024 , shows a view of construction cranes at Ramat Shlomo, a Jewish settlement in the Israeli-annexed eastern sector of Jerusalem. (Photo by AHMAD GHARABLI / AFP)
This picture taken on June 28, 2024 , shows a view of construction cranes at Ramat Shlomo, a Jewish settlement in the Israeli-annexed eastern sector of Jerusalem. (Photo by AHMAD GHARABLI / AFP)

Canada on Monday urged the Israeli government to reverse a decision to approve new settlement outposts in the West Bank, saying the move was in contravention of international law.

"Canada firmly opposes the government of Israel’s decision to approve new settlements in the West Bank. Unilateral actions, such as financially weakening the Palestinian Authority and expanding settlements is in contravention of international law," the Canadian foreign ministry said in a statement on social media X.

Israel has approved the largest seizure of land in the occupied West Bank in over three decades and advanced plans to build thousands of new settlement homes, according to Peace Now, an Israeli anti-settlement monitoring group. They are the latest steps by Israel’s hard-line government meant to cement Israel’s control over the territory and prevent the establishment of an independent Palestinian state.

The international community considers the settlements illegal or illegitimate, and the Palestinians say they are the main barrier to a lasting peace agreement.
But with more than 500,000 Israeli settlers living in the West Bank, it will be difficult – some say impossible – to partition the territory as part of a two-state solution.



Ruling Baath Party Controls Syrian Parliament

Voters cast their ballots at a polling station in Damascus (EPA)
Voters cast their ballots at a polling station in Damascus (EPA)
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Ruling Baath Party Controls Syrian Parliament

Voters cast their ballots at a polling station in Damascus (EPA)
Voters cast their ballots at a polling station in Damascus (EPA)

The ruling Baath Party took control of the Syrian Parliament, winning 170 seats out of 250 in the parliamentary elections announced Thursday.
The National Front parties, allied with the Baath, won 14 seats, bringing the total number of the Front alliance to 184 deputies, while 66 independent candidates reached the parliament.
According to the lists announced by the Baath Party’s regional leadership, members of the Baath Party topped the election results by a wide margin. The highest voter turnout was registered in the Homs Governorate, which accounted for more than 600,000 voters.
The Higher Judicial Elections Committee announced on Thursday the results of the People’s Assembly elections for the fourth legislative term, which took place on Monday.
The Syrian Arab Agency (SANA) quoted the head of the committee, Judge Jihad Murad, as saying that the participation rate in the elections reached 38.16 percent.
In a press conference at the Ministry of Justice, Murad announced the names of the winning candidates, noting that petitions can be submitted before the Supreme Constitutional Court on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
He added that the committee has sought to guarantee a democratic climate to ensure a smooth and fair voting process.
“The committee was keen to provide a democratic atmosphere by taking all necessary procedures to ensure freedom of voters and integrity of the elections,” he said.
Murad also pointed to the interaction of citizens and keenness to exercise their electoral right in choosing their representatives for membership in the People’s Assembly.
He stressed that the winning candidates possess scientific competence, various experiences, and social standing, which allows the new council to perform its national role to the fullest extent.
The Syrian People’s Assembly consists of 250 members. 1,516 candidates participated in the electoral race, while 8,151 polling stations were distributed in areas controlled by the Syrian government.
No elections took place in the regions of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) in northeastern Syria, nor in those controlled by the Syrian opposition in the country’s north-west.