Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas says the international community and the European Union, including Germany in particular, should put pressure on Israel to stop its actions as the Tel Aviv regime is pressing ahead with its occupation, expansionism and racism.
In a meeting with German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock at the presidential headquarters in Ramallah, Abbas emphasized that the Palestinian side would not accept, under any circumstances, the continuation of the Israel regime's occupation and racist practices in the territories occupied since June 1967.
Abbas thanked the top German diplomat for her country’s institution and infrastructure-building support for Palestine and expressed Palestine’s keenness to strengthen its friendly relations with Germany in the interests of the two nations.
Baerbock is on her first visit to West Asia as foreign minister from February 9-12. The German foreign minister pledged to continue providing economic support to the Palestinian people.
The Israeli regime's settlement expansion and land-grab policy across the Palestinian territories continue unabated despite international outcry. Many believe such a policy is aimed at forcing the Palestinians to leave their homeland by making it difficult for them to live there.
Speaking at the opening of the 31st session of the Palestinian Central Council earlier this month, Abbas said his country is considering all options to end the Israeli occupation as the Tel Aviv regime is pressing ahead with "its colonial practices that perpetuate apartheid and settler terrorism."
“We will consider all our options, especially as we have responded, to the fullest extent, to the international efforts aimed at finding a fair resolution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, and fulfilled all our obligations, so that no one can blame us for the obstruction of the peace process,” the Palestinian president said.
Since Israel seized East al-Quds in the 1967 war, Israeli settler organizations have claimed ownership of land in Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood and have filed multiple lawsuits to force Palestinians from the area.
Israel settlement in West Bank contravenes international law: German FM
In another meeting with her Israeli counterpart Yair Lapid, the German foreign minister slammed the Tel Aviv regime's settlement activities in the West Bank, saying they are in violation of international law.
Addressing a joint press conference, Baerbock also stressed the importance of reviving the landmark 2015 agreement, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), in a bid to improve security in the region. Lapid echoed a quite different view, saying the JCPOA revival would not prevent what he called 'nuclear dangers'.
Most of the international community considers Israeli settlement construction illegal under international law and an obstacle to the so-called solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Nearly 700,000 Israelis live in settlements built since the 1967 occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East al-Quds.
The UN Security Council has in several resolutions condemned the Tel Aviv regime’s settlement projects in the occupied Palestinian lands. Palestinians want the West Bank as part of a future independent state with East al-Quds as its capital.