Turkey: US opinion on Israeli 'settlements' has no validity

Turkish foreign minister blasts State Department's declaration that US does not view Israeli towns in Judea and Samaria as illegal.

Arutz Sheva Staff, AFP, | updated: 12:56

Mevlut Cavusoglu
Mevlut Cavusoglu

Turkey said on Tuesday that the United States declaration that it will no longer regard Israeli towns in Judea and Samaria as inherently illegal has no validity in international law.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu wrote on Twitter that such declarations "shall have no validity with respect to international law".

"No country is above international law," he said.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on Monday that treating Israeli towns in Judea and Samaria as illegal "hasn't worked" to advance the peace process, the latest in a series of policy shifts by the Trump administration vis-à-vis Israel which diverge from the policies of the Obama administration.

The statement puts the United States at odds with United Nations Security Council resolutions, as well as the European Union, which said Monday that its policy on Israeli towns in Judea and Samaria would remain unchanged even after Pompeo’s announcement.

“The European Union's position on Israeli settlement policy in the occupied Palestinian territory is clear and remains unchanged: all settlement activity is illegal under international law and it erodes the viability of the two-state solution and the prospects for a lasting peace, as reaffirmed by UN Security Council Resolution 2334,” said European Union foreign affairs chief Mogherini in a statement.