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Macron Asks Israel to Drop Annexation Plans

Macron Asks Israel to Drop Annexation Plans

Friday, 10 July, 2020 - 08:15
FILE PHOTO: French President Emmanuel Macron attends a virtual meeting with European leaders to discuss the bloc's budget and recovery fund, in Paris, France June 19, 2020. Eliot Blondet/Pool via REUTERS
Asharq Al-Awsat

Emmanuel Macron asked Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to refrain from annexing Palestinian territory during a telephone call between the two leaders, the French president's office said on Friday.

Macron "emphasized that such a move would contravene international law and jeopardize the possibility of a two-state solution as the basis of a fair and lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians", his office said in a statement after the call on Thursday.

The foreign ministers of Egypt, France, Germany and Jordan on Tuesday urged Israel to abandon plans to begin annexing settlements in the West Bank, warning such action could have "consequences" for relations.

"We concur that any annexation of Palestinian territories occupied in 1967 would be a violation of international law and imperil the foundations of the peace process," the ministers said in a statement after a joint video conference.

Netanyahu’s government had set July 1 as the date when it could begin to annex Jewish settlements in the West Bank as well as the strategic Jordan Valley.

The move was endorsed by a Middle East plan unveiled by US President Donald Trump in January.

Netanyahu's office made no announcement on July 1 as expected, but said talks were continuing with US officials and Israeli security chiefs.

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