Palestinians, including locals, political factions representatives, Palestinian Authority officials, international solidarity individuals and some high-ranking international representatives, are heading on Monday morning toward the northern West Bank area of Al-aghwar on the Jordan Valley, in what Palestinians say a bid to defend the region, amidst an expected Israeli annexation of the area early next month.
Local Palestinian sources in the West Bank said that upon an invitation by the ruling Fatah party of Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, in the West Bank and many other local Palestinian political factions, tens of thousands of Palestinians will be heading for the northern West Bank area of Al-aghwar, which Israeli officials say they will attempt to take over in July.
Palestinian protesters will be joined by several international representatives in the West Bank, including Arab and international ambassadors to the Palestinian Authority, United Nations’ special peace envoy, Nicholai Meladinov, the EU’s representative, and a number of others.
The protest is aimed at sending out a clear message of rejection of the planned Israeli annexation of the most fertile Palestinian agricultural land, as well as the imposition of Israeli sovereignty over large swathes of the West Bank, where Israel has erected hundreds of colonial Israeli settlements, which are illegal under international law and United Nations’ resolutions.
Several world bodies, including the United Nations, European Union and the League of Arab States, have already opposed the Israeli plans, expressing that the Israeli annexation would undermine prospects of just and durable peace between Palestinians and Israelis on the basis of United Nations’ resolutions and previously-signed peace accords between Palestine Liberation Organization and Israel.
Several weeks ago, Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, announced that the Palestine Liberation Organization is no longer committed to signed peace accords, including those pertaining to security.
Abbass’s announcement was in response to Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu’s declaration that Israel will annex the West Bank and take full control over the region, which Israel occupied in June 1967. Since then, the Israeli military has imposed martial law under the indigenous Palestinian population of the West Bank, including Jerusalem.