KUALA LUMPUR, May 22 -- Enough with rhetorics, it’s time for real action on Israel through sanctions and arms embargo due to its planned annexation of parts of West Bank, said Tan Sri Syed Hamid Albar, a former Malaysian foreign minister.
Speaking at a webinar session on Wednesday, he said there should be a consensus among the international community on the matter in order to create a mechanism to force Israel to adhere to international laws and for the peace process to really start between Palestine and Israel.
Reflecting on the success of the ending of apartheid in South Africa, Syed Hamid said at the time, the international community reached a consensus to move together for the cause, and this is different from the Israel-Palestine issue as "the Zionist machinery controls most of the major powers and global governments".
The former foreign minister from 1999 to 2008 said that in his view, Israel was not really interested in a peace process with Palestine as it has no motivations to do so despite several diplomatic initiatives such as the Camp David (summit in 2000), the Taba Summit (in 2001) and the Arab Peace Initiative.
“(Since) the first veto used to prevent anything negative (from happening) to Israel, we see from then on, (that) Israel is the only country in the world that can ignore the resolutions of the United Nations, that can ignore international law.
“So what is the incentive or motivation for them to move (on with peace process)?” he questioned, adding that the US’ so-called Deal of The Century is the worst that could happen for the peace process.
He also said that President Donald Trump's administration has emboldened Israel with the opening of the US embassy in Jerusalem and by recognising Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
Syed Hamid said this as one of the speakers at the ‘American-Israeli Sedition: West Bank Annexation’ webinar, Wednesday night.
Another speaker, Al Quds Foundation Malaysia’s chief executive officer Dr Sharrif Abu Shamalah, said the people under the Israeli Occupation have been suffering since the first day of the occupation, and that Israel’s latest move to annex parts of West Bank will only worsen the situation.
“After Trump’s Deal of The Century, they face a lot of violence under the Israeli Occupation because the Israelis felt that they are stronger. They become more violent and brutal against the Palestinians,” he said.
The Palestinian added that the annexation of parts of West Bank will put more pressure on Palestinians living in Baitulmaqdis in the form of higher taxes, removal from the city, Judaisation of the education curriculum, as well as a heightened campaign to revoke them of their IDs.
And as a result of the newly-formed Israel’s unity government between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his political rival Benny Gantz, both parties inked an agreement which will allow Israel to initiate legislation to annex large parts of the occupied West Bank starting in July.
In response, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has said that he is ending all agreements with Israel and the US.
According to reports, the European Union (EU) said it is against the move and will rally against the unilateral action through diplomatic channels.
West Bank, including East Jerusalem, has been under Israeli occupation since the 1967 Six-Day War. It is estimated that about 700,000 Israeli illegal settlers are in the occupied territory.
The international community considers Israeli settlements as illegal under international law.
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