Jordan’s king warns Israel of ‘massive conflict’ over West Bank annexation

by Compiled from Wire Services
ISTANBUL Mid-East May 15, 2020

A general view of the Old City of Hebron with the Ibrahimi mosque, or the Tomb of the Patriarchs, closed down during the coronavirus pandemic crisis, occupied West Bank, on May 15, 2020. (AFP Photo)

Jordan’s king warned Israel of a “massive conflict” if it proceeds with plans to annex large parts of the occupied West Bank, as European Union foreign ministers met Friday to discuss what action the bloc might take in response to such a move.

Israel has vowed to annex Jewish settlements and the Jordan Valley, which could spell the end of the long-stalled peace process by making it virtually impossible to establish a viable Palestinian state. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has moved a step closer by reaching an agreement to form a government after more than a year of political deadlock.

President Donald Trump’s Middle East plan, which overwhelmingly favors Israel and was rejected by the Palestinians, gave a green light to annexation, but most of the rest of the international community is strongly opposed.

“Leaders who advocate a one-state solution do not understand what that would mean,” Jordan’s King Abdullah II said in an interview with the German magazine Der Spiegel published Friday.

“What would happen if the Palestinian National Authority collapsed? There would be more chaos and extremism in the region. If Israel really annexed the West Bank in July, it would lead to a massive conflict with the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan,” he said.

Jordan is a close Western ally and one of only two Arab states to have signed a peace treaty with Israel. Abdullah declined to say whether annexation would threaten that agreement.

“I don’t want to make threats and create an atmosphere of loggerheads, but we are considering all options. We agree with many countries in Europe and the international community that the law of strength should not apply in the Middle East.”

EU foreign ministers had planned to welcome the formation of a new Israeli government and offer the bloc’s cooperation, but Netanyahu and his rival-turned-partner, Benny Gantz, have postponed the swearing-in of their controversial new Cabinet as the Israeli leader tries to quell infighting within his Likud party.

The ceremony, originally scheduled for Thursday, is now planned for Sunday to give Netanyahu more time to hand out coveted Cabinet appointments to members of his party.

Their coalition agreement allows him to present an annexation proposal as soon as July 1, and the EU ministers are struggling to thrash out a common position should the move go ahead.

The 27-nation bloc has routinely condemned Israeli settlement expansion and warned against annexation, but member countries appear too divided to take any major action, such as imposing sanctions. They are also limited to holding informal talks via videoconference because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“This is a very divisive issue inside the council” of ministers, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said Monday.

Borrell said the talks are nevertheless important for setting out the positions of the 27 countries on “the respect of international law and how can we judge this announced annexation in order to clarify the position of the European Union.”

In February, he affirmed the bloc’s commitment to a two-state solution in the Middle East based on the 1967 lines, with the possibility of mutually agreed land-swaps. Israel seized east Jerusalem, the West Bank and the Gaza Strip in the 1967 war. The Palestinians want all three to form their future state.
The EU has already rejected U.S. President Donald Trump’s Mideast plan, which would allow Israel to annex about one-third of the West Bank, leaving the Palestinians with heavily conditioned statehood in scattered territorial enclaves surrounded by Israel.
Jordan has been lobbying the EU to take “practical steps” to make sure annexation doesn’t happen.

In a statement, Jordan’s Foreign Minister Ayman al-Safadi “stressed the need for the international community and the European Union in particular to take practical steps that reflect the rejection of any Israeli decision to annex.”

Israel captured the West Bank, east Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip in the 1967 Mideast war. The Palestinians seek these territories as part of a future independent state. In the decades since, Israel has built settlements in the West Bank and east Jerusalem that now house nearly 700,000 Israelis. Most of the international community considers these settlements a violation of international law and obstacles to peace.


10 replies

  1. I am afraid Israel just will not care or bother. And Jordan is not strong enough financially nor military to make any difference. King of Jordan: take care.

    • I agree it , Rafiq
      Even all Arab countries cannot defeat a tiny Israel
      This century is Jews time—God has promised to His people to defeat who attack Israel. God has already proven to the world since 1947. All Arab countries tried to attack Israel 4 times, Israel won 4 times battle.

      God will protect His people. Jews are the chosen people of God

      • With its policy of Apartheid Israel will destroy itself. No need of Arab attacks any more.

  2. Even Israel has gaven the freedom of worship to Ahmadiyyah they still do not know how to be grateful or appreciate Israel— ahmadiyyah still show hatred toward Israel— God knows it.

    • Somi cannot differentiate. Of course Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at appreciate the Government of Israel’s support for our community in Israel.

      ok. let me give you an example. If one man is kind and supportive to his children, but beats up his wife, should I not speak up against his marital abuse just because he is kind to his children?

      That is Somi. Because the State of Israel is treating the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in Israel well we should shut up when they do human rights abuses in the occupied territories?

      • I tell this to you Rafiq—
        Israel csnnot treat Hamas or intoleran Muslim equally who want to expel Jewd.

        Al Quran and Hadith command Muslim Arab to expel Hews from Arab Panensula—

        Israel already gave up Gaza to Palestine and what happened— they created Jihadith and Rockets to kill Jews.

        90 percent Arab Muslims hate Jews and want to expel Jews from Arab Psnensula

        There is no peace between Israel and Arab radikal intoleran. For sure

      • THE USUAL SOMI misleading “NEWS”. ‘Israel gave up Gaza’. Israel made Gaza into a big open air prison. Gaza is blockaded on all fronts. No sea port is functioning, no airport is functioning. No one and nothing can enter without ISRAEL’s permission. You call that ‘gave up Gaza’? (Yes, I do not understand why Egypt is cooperating with Israel on this blockade. Crazy). Of course after how Israel has treated the people of Gaza and the occupied West Bank there is little love for them. Arab Muslims do not hate Jews, but they may be hating the Israelis who kicked them out of their homes. very understandable I would say. But Somi does not want to understand.

      • It is a fact that Hamas was created by Israel. Look it up. The founder of Hamas was in Israel’s jails and was released to found Hamas. Why? Because they wanted to split the Palestinian votes away from Yasser Arafat. They succeeded. In addition they now have an eternal excuse for ‘no peace’. Clever.

        From The Washington Post (not a Palestinian source):

    • seems you did not visit Israel. Militarized country. And visit the occupied territories. Human Rights violations on a daily basis. Murders by Jews go unpunished. Apartheid. But you are blind on one eye.

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