LONDON (AP) — A gaggle of European nations expressed “grave concern” Saturday that latest violence within the West Bank might derail efforts to rekindle peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians as they known as on either side to revive calm.
The UK, France, Germany, Italy, Poland and Spain issued a joint assertion condemning assaults in opposition to each Israelis and Palestinians following an outbreak of violence that left three folks lifeless within the occupied West Bank city of Hawara.
“These acts can lead nowhere, besides to extra violence,” the European nations mentioned. “These accountable should face full accountability and authorized prosecution. All unilateral actions that threaten peace and incitement to violence should stop.’’
Scores of Israeli settlers rampaged by way of Hawara on Feb. 26, setting dozens of vehicles and houses on fireplace after two settlers have been killed by a Palestinian gunman. Palestinian medics mentioned one man was killed and 4 others have been badly wounded in one of many worst outbreaks of settler violence in many years.
The violence occurred the identical day that Israeli and Palestinian representatives joined U.S., Egyptian and Jordanian officers in Aqaba, Jordan, for the primary high-level talks in years aimed toward defusing tensions within the areas.
The assaults raised doubts a couple of assertion launched after the talks wherein Israeli and Palestinian officers reaffirmed their dedication to “de-escalation on the bottom” and the necessity to stop additional violence.
Tensions within the West Bank have soared in latest months. Close to-daily Israeli arrest raids have sparked gunfights that killed over 60 Palestinians up to now this yr — the best demise toll within the first two months of the yr since 2000.
Hawara, a town of 7,000 Palestinians surrounded by ideological Jewish settlements, has lengthy been a flash level for violence between Israelis and Palestinians.
The six European nations mentioned the talks in Aqaba created a “spark of hope,” they usually urged either side to work towards a long-lasting peace primarily based on a two-state answer.
“We urge all events to chorus from making this fragile course of derail, and name on all events to make good on the commitments they made within the Aqaba assembly by de-escalating in phrases and deeds and to revive calm, to ensure that these efforts to blossom,” they mentioned.
Additionally they urged the Israeli authorities to reverse a latest resolution to allow the development of greater than 7,000 new housing models within the West Bank and to legalize different settlements.
Israel’s new authorities, probably the most right-wing in its historical past, has vowed to develop settlements on occupied land that Palestinians search for a future state. A lot of the world considers Israeli settlements a violation of worldwide legislation and a roadblock to peace.