Americans for Peace Now today issues the following statement in the wake of the Israeli Knesset's passage of legislation legalizing illegal settler construction on private Palestinian land:
Americans for Peace Now (APN) today issued the following response to the White House's statement on Israeli settlements in the West Bank:
While some may view it as positive that President Trump is paying attention to the Israeli government's aggressive settlement construction push, the statement issued yesterday by the White House should be understood for what it is: a dangerous and unprecedented retreat from and reframing of longstanding bipartisan U.S. policy on settlements, including under presidents George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama.
Americans for Peace Now (APN) is outraged by the Israeli government’s approval of more than 3,000 new housing units in West Bank settlements, a measure that comes days after the approval of another 2,500 new settlement homes. APN is equally outraged by the Trump administration’s acquiescence as the Netanyahu government opens the settlements floodgates.
The new wave of settlement construction permits is particularly infuriating because it is apparently intended to appease the settlers and their advocates in the Knesset, after the Israeli government was forced by the courts - after years of delays and excuses - to obey the law and evict settlers from the West Bank illegal outpost of Amona. Settlers have been resisting the eviction throughout the day Wednesday. Twenty five of the police officers who the settlers attacked – some of them had acid thrown in their faces – were hospitalized.
News from Peace Now:
Yesterday, January 31, 2017 the Prime Minister and Minister of Defense issued an announcement on the promotion
of 3,000 housing units in the settlements. The announcement was issued late last night, possibly under the
assumption that all international attention will be directed towards the Amona evacuation.
The announcement is not an official step and is likely to be followed by concrete actions in the coming days in the shape of publications of tenders and promotion of plans.
Americans for Peace Now (APN) is appalled at Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's expression of support for President Trump's immigration policies. APN calls on Netanyahu to stay out of America's heated debate on immigration, and to take into consideration the impact that statements on issues like this have on Israel's relations with broad, key segments of the American public and with the vast majority of American Jews.
News from Peace Now:
Peace Now: "Netanyahu is taking advantage of the presidential transition in the United States in order to appease the settlers, a small minority of the Israeli public, and score political points with his right flank. Instead of jeopardizing the two-state solution, it is time for Netanyahu to take responsibility for the future of Israel by halting settlement construction and assuring the future of Israel as both Jewish and democratic."
Americans for Peace Now (APN) is alarmed by a series of West Bank and East Jerusalem settlements-related measures that the Government of Israel is taking, or has indicated it intends to take, in the wake of the inauguration of President Donald Trump.
APN warns President Trump that acquiescing to such measures would send a dangerous message of weakness to the region and the world, right at the outset of his tenure in the White House. It would signal to America's allies and adversaries alike that this new president lacks the ability or the interest to recognize and defend core U.S. national security interests in the Middle East. It would announce to the world that on a critical issues like this – on which U.S. policies reverberate across the globe – the Trump Administration cannot or will not stand up to pressure from a narrow constituency of zealots and ideologues who prioritize an ideological, messianic Middle East agenda over national security and best interests of both the American people and Israel.
This statement will be sent out to the media on Friday morning, shortly before inauguration:
Under normal circumstances, Americans for Peace Now (APN) would today be welcoming the inauguration of the new U.S. president, wishing him success and urging him to take action toward peace between Israel and her neighbors. Today’s circumstances are not normal.
Donald Trump, both as a candidate and as President-elect, has said that he would like to broker the “ultimate deal” between Israelis and Palestinians. But this potentially encouraging sentiment has been overshadowed – trumped, as it were – by a series of alarming actions and statements that send a very different message.
Secretary of State John Kerry today articulated, in the clearest possible terms, what is at stake for both Israel and the US: Israel's security and its viability as a democracy and a Jewish state. He also offered a pragmatic vision of the only way forward for Israel that ensures both.
Americans for Peace Now (APN) welcomes today's action in the United Nations Security Council in support of Israeli-Palestinian peace and the two-state solution.