Peace Now: Settlements are Obstacle in the Way of Agreement with Palestinians
By Izzat Ramini
Albawba.com – Ramallah
The Israeli movement of “Peace Now” issued Monday a statement forwarded to Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak calling for stopping settlement expansion in the West Bank and Gaza, reiterating that settlements stand as an obstacle in the way of peace and jeopardize Israel’s security.
The statement stressed that “the building of settlements and opening roads leading to them,” is considered, “a provocative act that is forced by Israel and therefore unnecessarily calling for counter violence.”
“The settlements,” the statement said, “is a security mistake endangering the lives of soldiers guarding them.”
It demanded “an immediate curb to building settlements,” adding that an end is to be brought about to the building of settlements in east Jerusalem, such as Ras Al Amoud and Jabal Abu Ghunaim, deeming settlement activities in the area as “provocative.”
The statement stressed the need for “dismantling of settlements built in the heart of crowded Palestinian areas, which provoke horrible bloodshed.” Settlements such as Nitzarinm, Kfar Darum, Psagot, and the Jewish enclaves in Hebron fall under this category, according to Peace Now.
The peace movement also protested favoritism practiced regarding the financial allotments to settlements.
The peace activists also reminded Barak that he had agreed to the right of the Palestinians to an independent state on continuous national land.
“You have to understand that there is no hope, or right for building settlements except through the exchange of land,” they said adding, “there will not be agreement [with the Palestinians] except on the basis of the 1967 Green Line.”
Peace Now vowed to continue informing the public of the millions of shekels spent on building the settlements and the confiscation of Palestinian land that will be returned to their owners sooner or later.
On the other hand, the movement said that it “will struggle against the policies which continue to scarifies human beings for an old diminishing dream.”
The statement comes after a long period of silence on the part of the peace group regarding the use of violence by Israeli forces against the Palestinian people.
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