Israel Backs Down on Plans to Annex Large Chunks of Palestinian Land After Strong Opposition from EU, UK

Image is courtesy of Bethlehem Bible College on Facebook.

On July 1st, Israel was set to annex more land from the West Bank. However, the day and the whole month passed without an announcement. What happened?

The EU showed strong opposition to the plan, and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson even penned an article warning against the move. Many in Israel don’t even support the plan.

But Yousef AlKhouri of Bethlehem Bible College says that doesn’t mean annexation won’t take place. “Every single day, we watch the news and we learn about Israeli settlers and the Israeli government taking a few acres here on there from the West Bank in order to expand settlements. In the Bethlehem area only two days or three days ago, the Israeli government approved building a few hundreds of houses in a settlement on a Palestinian owned land.”

Effects of annexation on Palestinians

In addition, Israeli soldiers demolished a checkpoint used for COVID-19 testing in the area around Hebron, which has become a COVID-19 epicenter in the region. AlKhouri says the ongoing annexation is one of the biggest obstacles to Palestine fighting COVID-19.

AlKhouri also says Palestinian Christians don’t take much comfort from the EU’s pushback to the annexation plans. “We’ve lost hope in political systems around the world that sometimes support Palestinians or support Israelis. They don’t get us anywhere. For the last 72 years, those systems didn’t help us to get peace or to establish our own statehood in the Palestinian land, according to the protection plan of 1947. As a Palestinian, we live day to day trusting that the next day will be better than today.”

In fact, AlKhouri says 36% of Christians in Palestine are now considering immigrating away from the country out of concern for their safety and the ineffective political system that would protect them.

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SOURCE: Mission Network News, Kevin Zeller

CALL TO ACTION

  • Pray that Palestinian Christians will be safe, and that they will be the salt and light of Christ.
  • Consider visiting Christians in Palestine when travel is safe again, and educate yourself about the things they are going through.
  • Pray that God would bring peace and harmony to this land.