Israel’s aim to annex parts of the occupied West Bank is clearly “illegal”, the United Nations’ human rights chief said on Monday, warning that the consequences could be “disastrous”.
Just days before Israel intends to kick-start plans to annex its West Bank settlements and parts of the strategic Jordan Valley, Michelle Bachelet added her voice to the chorus urging Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to drop the proposal.
“Annexation is illegal. Period,” the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said in a statement. “Any annexation. Whether it is 30 percent of the West Bank, or 5 percent,” she said, urging Israel to “listen to its own former senior officials and generals, as well as to the multitude of voices around the world, warning it not to proceed along this dangerous path.”
International condemnation of the possible Israeli annexations has mounted ahead of July 1, when Israel could take its first steps towards implementing part of a United States-proposed Middle East plan.