Minister of Foreign Affairs:

Press releases

Condemns decision on Israeli settlements

‘I condemn Israel’s decision to legalise nine settlement outposts in the occupied West Bank. I also strongly object to the plans to build thousands of new housing units within established settlements. The Israeli settlement policy on occupied land is in violation of international law and must be stopped,’ said Minister of Foreign Affairs Anniken Huitfeldt.

On Sunday 12 February, the Israeli Government’s security cabinet approved legalisation of nine outposts which up to now have not been legal under Israeli law. This means that the nine outposts, located deep in the occupied West Bank, will be designated authorised settlements. Plans are also underway to approve approximately 10 000 new housing units. This comes at a time when a number of Palestinian communities and villages in the West Bank are already at risk of forced displacement.

‘I am deeply concerned about the scale of human suffering. People are living in a state of fear due to the frequent attacks and loss of life. It is important that the Israeli authorities take steps to avoid further escalation and revoke these decisions, which undermine the prospects of a two-state solution and will inevitably lead to more conflict. It is essential that the Israeli Government works proactively to ease tensions before the situation spirals out of control. Palestinian leaders, too, must do their part to calm the situation,’ said Ms Huitfeldt.