Wednesday, 21 April 2021

Questions (880)

Patrick Costello

Question:

880. Deputy Patrick Costello asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs the actions he has taken to oppose any annexation or plans to apply Israeli sovereignty over territory which is part of Occupied Palestine in view of the commitments in the Programme for Government that Ireland’s interests are best served by active and engaged membership of the European Union and to give leadership within the EU. [20435/21]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Foreign)

The unilateral annexation by Israel of any part of the occupied Palestinian territory would be a clear violation of international law. It would have no legitimacy, and would not be recognised or accepted by Ireland, or by the international community more generally, and would be deeply damaging to the Two State solution.

The Programme for Government clearly states that the Government would regard any such moves as “a breach of international law and would consider an appropriate response to them at both national and international level”.

I welcomed the announcement by Israel on 13 August 2020 that it will suspend plans to annex parts of the occupied Palestinian territory. The EU's High Representative / Vice President Josep Borrell also welcomed the announcement on behalf of the EU in a Declaration on 15 August. I have noted with concern, however, subsequent Israeli statements that annexation plans remain on the table and I have called for any such plans to be permanently withdrawn. I have also raised the issue directly with my Israeli counterpart, Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi.

Questions Nos. 881 and 882 answered with Question No. 834.