11 October 2017 – More Illegal Israeli Settlements

Israel’s constant provocative declarations and advancement of plans to construct and expand Israeli settlements throughout the Occupied State of Palestine, including East Jerusalem, in direct and grave contravention of international law and United Nations Security Council resolutions, including resolution 2334 (2016), and in blatant defiance of the international community, continue to heighten tensions and to undermine any efforts to salvage the two-State solution on the 1967 lines and the prospects for peace.

In this connection, yesterday, the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office issued a press release announcing its plans to construct 3,736 more settlement units throughout the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem. According to the Israeli human rights organization, Peace Now, Israel’s latest plans include the building of at least 2,413 settlement units in different stages, including in the heart of Al-Khalil (Hebron) and in the settlement of “Beit El” near Ramallah. Moreover, Peace Now reports that Israel announced the final approval of the new settlements of “Amihai” and “Migron”, as well as a new site for 30 so-called “temporary structures” on the Palestinian lands of Al-Khadr village intended as a new settlement for the Israeli settlers of “Nativ Ha’avot”.

It is clear that with each announcement of further Israeli settlement construction the Government of Israel reveals its true and unlawful intentions, which is to annex and colonize more and more Palestinian land and to persist with its half-century foreign occupation. The global consensus continues to be in support of the two-State solution based on the 1967 lines as the only viable solution and foundation for a just and comprehensive peace. However, as all are aware, this is clearly dependent on the full, immediate cessation and reversal of all such illegal colonization activities. Israel’s provocative and inciteful rhetoric, decisions and actions are totally to the contrary of this global consensus and constitute grave breaches of international law, flagrant violations of the relevant UN resolutions, and blatant contempt of the international community.

Faced with this reality, there must be firm condemnation of all such illegal Israeli actions and provocations and incitement and a clear reiteration of the demand for the complete and immediate cessation of settlement activities and all other violations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem.

The international community must demand Israel’s compliance with international law, including humanitarian law and human rights law, and with all relevant resolutions, including resolution 2334 (2016), and be prepared to act to hold it accountable in light of such continued non-compliance. We recall the obligations stipulated in resolution 2334 (2016), both in terms of the obligations of the occupying Power and those of States and the international community as a whole, to bring an end to this illegal situation, to reverse the negative trends on the ground that are destroying the two-State solution, and to advance a just, comprehensive and lasting peace. The time is way overdue to stop dealing with Israel as a state above the law. No country is above the law, including Israel.

This letter is in follow-up to our 619 previous letters regarding the ongoing crisis in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, which constitutes the territory of the State of Palestine.  These letters, dated from 29 September 2000 (A/55/432-S/2000/921) to 25 September 2017 (A/ES-10/xxx-S/2017/xx) constitute a basic record of the crimes being committed by Israel, the occupying Power, against the Palestinian people since September 2000.  For all of these war crimes, acts of State terrorism and systematic human rights violations being committed against the Palestinian people, Israel, the occupying Power, must be held accountable and the perpetrators be brought to justice.

I should be grateful if you would arrange to have the text of the present letter and its annex made available to the members of the Security Council for their valuable consideration.

Please accept, Excellency, the assurances of my highest consideration.


Dr. Riyad Mansour

Ambassador, Permanent Observer of the State of Palestine to the United Nations