Permanent representatives of the Arab League take part in an emergency meeting
Permanent representatives of the Arab League take part in an emergency meetingReuters

The Arab League said on Thursday that an Israeli proposal to apply sovereignty over parts of Judea and Samaria constituted a "new war crime" against the Palestinians, AFP reports.

"The implementation of plans to annex any part of the Palestinian territories occupied in 1967, including the Jordan Valley... and the lands on which Israeli settlements are standing represents a new war crime... against the Palestinian people," Arab foreign ministers said in a joint statement following a virtual conference chaired in Cairo.

The Arab League also urged the United States to "withdraw its support in enabling the plans of the occupying Israeli government".

The condemnation follows the coalition agreement between Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Blue and White chairman Benny Gantz, which states that the government could apply sovereignty to parts of Judea and Samaria this coming July.

A State Department spokesperson said on Monday that “we are prepared to recognize Israeli actions to extend Israeli sovereignty and the application of Israeli law to areas of the West Bank that the vision foresees as being part of the State of Israel.”

The spokesperson also added that the US would ask Israel’s new unity government to negotiate with Palestinian Arabs.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo last week said that application of sovereignty was ultimately "an Israeli decision."

The Palestinian Authority (PA) has expressed outrage over the coalition agreement. Saeb Erekat, the Secretary-General of the Palestine Liberation Organization, said that “a government coalition based on a commitment to annex more occupied Palestinian territory is a threat to a rules-based world order in general, but to peace, security and stability in the Middle East in particular.”

“Annexation means the end of any possibility for a negotiated solution. It is an international responsibility to hold the new Israeli government accountable and to demand full implementation of its obligations under international law and signed agreements,” he stated.

The PA “foreign minister”, Riyad al-Malki, cautioned against the sovereignty move during Thursday’s Arab League meeting, saying it would "end the two-state solution".

He added the move would "turn the battle from a political one to an endless religious war... that will never bring about stability, security or peace to our region".