Monday, 14 January 2013

Europe will ditch Israel sooner than US, Israeli analyst says

Europe’s patience over nonstop Israeli settlement building on the occupied Palestinian lands will run out sooner than America’s, an Israeli academician and political commentator says.

Dr. Paul Rivlin, a senior research fellow of Middle Eastern and African studies at Tel Aviv University, made the remarks during a recent interview with the Internet-based video streaming network HuffPost Live run by news website The Huffington Post.

"The West will simply not allow this to happen," said Rivlin, referring to Israel's illegal settlement activities on the Palestinian territories, "sooner or later there will be a break, and it's quite possible that this break will come with Europe instead of the United States."

"I suspect that the European patience for Israel will break sooner than the American one, whether we like it or not," he added.

Commenting on Israel’s future, Rivlin said, "Israel is occupying the West Bank, and is expanding settlements all over the West Bank -- particularly around Jerusalem (al-Quds). This will lead to either the creation of a single state (Palestine), in which there is eventually a majority of non-Jews... or as some Israelis would like, on the very far right, the expulsion of the Palestinians -- either way that is the end of…” Israel.

Last month, Israeli officials said they would go ahead with plans to build 6,500 settler units on Palestinian territory, despite the opposition of the United Nations and the international community.

The presence and continued expansion of Israeli settlements in occupied Palestine has created a major obstacle for the efforts to establish peace in the Middle East.

More than half a million Israelis live in over 120 illegal settlements built since Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East al-Quds in 1967.

The UN and most countries regard the Israeli settlements as illegal because the territories were captured by Israel in a war in 1967 and are hence subject to the Geneva Conventions, which forbids construction on occupied lands.

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