Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been very optimistic despite facing criminal charges, declaring that he will not lose the opportunity to annex the West Bank.
Describing the move as one of the main tasks of his new government, Netanyahu said Monday in a meeting with lawmakers from his Likud party that Israel would not miss an "historic opportunity" to extend its sovereignty over parts of the West Bank.
"We have a historic opportunity, which has not existed since 1948, to judiciously apply sovereignty as a diplomatic step ... in Judea and Samaria," he said, referring to the year of Israel's creation, and using the Biblical names for the West Bank.
"It is a great opportunity and we will not miss it," added Netanyahu the day after his corruption trial began. He referred to the US president's peace plan Donald Trump, called "the deal of the century," as support for de facto annexation.
Israel's annexation of the West Bank is considered illegal by international community under international law. The planned annexation has triggered a reaction in which major blocs like the European Union threaten to impose sanctions.
However, further annexation of Palestinian territory has strong backing within Israel, where the views of right-wing extremists and religious fundamentalists have been adopted as the country's policy.
A recent poll has revealed that a large majority of French-speaking Israelis, 90%, support that move. The same survey conducted by i24 news revealed that almost half, 47% of native English-speakers living in Israel supported the illegal measure.
The Trump administration has given the measure the green light. United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, a fervent evangelical Christian, even ignored established international norms by suggesting that insisting that the law be the basis of peace would not end the conflict.
"The harsh truth is that there will never be a judicial resolution of the conflict, and the arguments about who is right and who is not as a matter of international law will not bring peace," Pompeo said in November announcing a dramatic change in the foreign policy of the United States. USA