RAMALLAH, Tuesday, May 19, 2020 (WAFA) – Premier Mohammad Shtayyeh Tuesday evening urged Germany to stand in the face of Israel’s annexation move and recognize the State of Palestine.
Speaking during the virtual meeting of the German-Palestinian Steering Committee that was attended by German Federal Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, Shtayyeh called on Germany to buttress its political position in support of the two-state solution and stand up against Israel’s illegal annexation move, which would end the prospects of Palestinian statehood and pose a threat to regional security and stability.
He stated that the annexation move was a “critical moment” for the question of Palestine, and stressed the need not to allow Israel to be above international law and destroy the prospects for the establishment of the Palestinian state through its actions and policies, including land grab and detentions, without being held account, and to break the fait accompli imposed by Israel.
He called on Germany to lead serious European efforts that would introduce a new path involving holding a multilateral conference on Palestine, especially after bilateral talks proved a total failure due to Israeli violations of signed agreements and the US lost credibility as an honet broker.
He noted that in continuation of Germany’s support for Palestinian institution-building and the two-state solution, it was now the time for Germany to recognize the State of Palestine on the pre-1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital, especially given the impending threat of Israel’s annexation move.
Focusing on the agreement between the Israeli coalition parties to advance the annexation plan as stipulated in the Israeli coalition agreement signed on April 20, Shtayyeh noted that the Israeli ruling coalition is expansionist that no longer debates about whether it is legal to annex, but how to do so in violation of international law.
German Federal Foreign Minister Heiko Maas underlined his country’s continued commitment to the negotiated two-state solution, and that it would not recognize any changes to 1967 borders unless agreed by both sides, the Palestinians and Israelis.
The German and Palestinian sides highlighted the unprecedented challenge posed to the world by the novel coronavirus pandemic, and the need for regional and international cooperation to succeed in the pandemic containment and deal with its socio-economic impacts.
In this regard, Shtayyeh expressed his gratitude to Germany for its ongoing assistance to Palestine, including funding to hospitals in East Jerusalem for the procurement of equipment for medical laboratories and protective gears as well as for providing €20 million for the United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA).