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Abbas Calls Israeli Settlements an ‘Attack’ On Palestinians, France’s Hollande Hopes Settler Law is Reconsidered | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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French President Francois Hollande welcomes Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas at the Elysee Palace.. (photo credit:REUTERS)

The ramp-up of Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories opens the way to their annexation, French President Francois Hollande said on Tuesday.

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas on Tuesday called a new Israeli law legalizing dozens of Jewish outposts built on private Palestinian land an “attack against our people”.

Israel has faced broad international criticism over the law its parliament passed on Monday, including from Britain, France, the United Nations and neighboring Jordan. The United States has not commented.

Israel passed a law on Monday retroactively legalizing about 4,000 settler homes built on privately owned Palestinian land in the occupied West Bank, a measure that has drawn international concern, reported Reuters.

The ramp-up of settlements “would open the way to the annexation of occupied territories”, Hollande said at news conference after meeting Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas.

“I think that Israel and its government could revise this text,” Hollande added. “This law is contrary to international law,” Abbas said. “It’s an aggression against our people,” he added.
On the other hand, Abbas said the law was illegal and was “obviously against the wishes of the international community.”

Speaking alongside Abbas at a press conference in Paris, French President Francois Hollande said: “I want to believe that Israel and its government will reconsider this law.”

The legislation would legalize dozens of wildcat Jewish outposts and thousands of settler homes in the occupied West Bank and prompted a call by the Palestinians for the international community to punish Israel.

Pro-Palestinian Israeli NGOs said they would ask the Supreme Court to strike down the law.

Israeli opposition leader Isaac Herzog warned the legislation could result in officials being hauled before the International Criminal Court.