As prominent Israelis dedicated to peace, we oppose Trump’s apartheid plan

Published in a letter to the Independent 30 January 2020

As Israelis dedicated to a peaceful future for our country and for our Palestinian neighbours, we state our principled opposition to the Trump administration’s plan for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

This plan will not solve but deepen the conflict, engendering a degree of inequality not seen since South African apartheid. This is a Bantustan plan, caging the Palestinians into pockets of land controlled by Israel. Trump and Netanyahu are acting as two wolves negotiating how to eat a sheep. Spurred on by Trump, Netanyahu has already declared his intention to formally launch annexation of the Jordan Valley and the settlements in the West Bank. All of this is diametrically opposed to international law and relevant UN Security Council resolutions, including 2334 (which states that Israel’s settlement activity constitutes a “flagrant violation” of international law and has “no legal validity”).

We are deeply alarmed by the EU’s weak response so far, framing the Trump plan as “an occasion” to relaunch peace negotiations. The plan is no such occasion, but a roadmap to apartheid 2.0. It won’t bring peace, nor a viable two-state solution. The Palestinian leadership can only reject it.

We call on Europe to reject Trump’s plan, too, and start taking serious measures against Israel’s annexation of Palestine – before it is too late.

Ilan Baruch, former Israeli ambassador to South Africa, Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe
Professor Eli Bar Navi, former Israeli ambassador to France
Professor Michael Ben-Yair, former attorney general of Israel and former acting Supreme Court judge
Avraham Burg, former speaker of knesset and head of the Jewish Agency
Zehava Galon, former member of knesset and former chair of Meretz Party
Professor David Harel, vice president of the Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities, Israel Prize recipient (2004), EMET Prize recipient (2010)
Professor Moty Heiblum, EMET Prize recipient (2014), member of the Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities 
Miki Kratsman, EMET Prize recipient (2011) 
Alex Levac, Israel Prize recipient (2005)
Dr Alon Liel, former director general of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, former ambassador to South Africa and Turkey
Mossi Raz, former member of knesset 
Michal Rozin, former member of knesset
Professor David Shulman, Israel Prize recipient (2016) and EMET Prize recipient (2010)  
Professor Zeev Sternhell, Israel Prize recipient (2008) 

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