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Winston Peters urged to condemn Israeli plans

The Palestine Solidarity Network Aotearoa has written to Minister of Foreign Affairs Winston Peters today urging that New Zealand condemn the Israeli Prime Minister’s planned annexation of vast tracts of the occupied West Bank of Palestine.

This is theft on a grand scale. It is a reckless incitement to violence. It is reprehensible.

Such an annexation of illegal Israeli settlements would be a blatant violation of the United Nations Charter and international law. It would constitute a war crime under the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

It is a travesty of what New Zealand stands for internationally.

Netanyahu made the announcement in his role as Prime Minister of Israel. He has broadcast to the world his intention to commit a war crime. New Zealand must respond.

We have told the foreign minister that the usual patsy diplomatic language of “disproportionate response” or “unhelpful to creating peace in the region” would be wholly inadequate.

Action NOW from New Zealand must include concrete steps such as:

• Condemning the proposed annexation of vast areas of Palestinian land
• Cancellation of the proposed importation of $9 million of Israeli military equipment
• Suspension of the signing of the so-called “innovation agreement” with the Israeli government
• Expelling the Israeli ambassador

For the past three years New Zealand has taken no significant action to protest Israeli theft of Palestinian land, attacks on unarmed Palestinian civilians or the murder of Palestinian children. Our silence has encouraged the Israeli government to continue its plunder of Palestine.

Silence now is not an option.

We must send an unambiguous signal to the Israeli government that New Zealand finds the proposed annexation abhorrent.


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