Joint annexation statement

Charities, trade unions, religious groups, and civil society organisations speak out against Israel’s plans to annex Palestinian land. A joint statement.

Charities, trade unions, religious groups, and civil society organisations speak out against Israel’s plans to annex Palestinian land. 

Over 20 organisations have released a statement against Israel’s continued plans to formally annex up to 30% of West Bank.

This statement comes as United Arab Emirates reach a deal to normalise relations with Israel, but the Israeli Prime Minister insists annexation will go ahead. Signatories include the Archbishop of Wales, Amos Trust, UNISON, Unite the Union, GMB, National Education Union, Palestine Solidarity Campaign and War on Want.

Two Israeli soldiers looking out over the Gaza Strip at sunset.

Above: Two Israeli soldiers looking out over the Gaza Strip at sunset.

The statement echoes UN Special Rapporteur Professor Michael Lynk’s calls for consequences for Israel’s defiance of international law. Regardless of formal annexation, continued Israeli settlement expansion and seizure of Palestinian land creates facts on the ground that amounts to de facto annexation.

The statement urgently calls on public bodies to “uphold their ethical and legal responsibilities to ensure human rights and international law are respected” as a direct response to Israel’s plans to illegally annex Palestinian land in the West Bank.

Over 20 organisations have released a statement against Israel’s continued plans to formally annex up to 30% of West Bank. This statement comes as United Arab Emirates reach a deal to normalise relations with Israel, but the Israeli Prime Minister insists annexation will go ahead. 

The groups are demanding accountability and responsibility, stating that the Israeli Government’s plans are “not only an attack on the rights and futures of Palestinians, but also against the very foundations of international law.”

The Israeli Government has said that it intends to annex large swathes of Palestinian land in the West Bank, which was militarily occupied in 1967. This would be the culmination of years of appropriation of land — through the forced displacement of Palestinians, settlement and the annexation of East Jerusalem. Annexation, illegal under international law, is the forcible and unilateral acquisition of territory over which it has no recognised sovereignty and to make it an integral part of the state — in this case, Israel.

A burnt-out toy Union Jack flag.

UK charities, trade unions, religious groups, and civil society organisations speak out against Israel’s plans to annex Palestinian land. 

UN Special Rapporteur Professor Michael Lynk in a recent report recommended that the international community “take all measures, including countermeasures and sanctions, necessary to ensure the respect by Israel of its duty under international law to end the occupation.” This mirrors the global call from Palestinian civil society for ‘effective measures’ to be taken to stop this annexation happening.

The Israeli Government has said that it intends to annex large swathes of Palestinian land in the West Bank, which was militarily occupied in 1967.

Recent commentary around the UAE-Israel deal brokered by Donald Trump has misleadingly suggested a roll-back of Israel’s intention to annex Palestinian land, rather than a temporary delay. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared immediately after the deal was announced: “There is no change to my plan to extend sovereignty, our sovereignty in Judea and Samaria, in full coordination with the United States.”

Ben Jamal, Director of Palestine Solidarity Campaign said:
“As the United Arab Emirates moves to normalise relations with Israel, and with Donald Trump in the White House — it is more imperative than ever for the international community to send a clear message that Israel will be held accountable for its annexation plans and other continued human rights abuses. We must come together in standing up for international law.”

Dave Prentis, UNISON general secretary said:
The annexation of Palestinian land is a gross violation of international law. Governments, businesses and public bodies all have a responsibility to ensure that none of their purchasing, procurement or investment decisions contribute to the occupation or the violation of Palestinian human rights.

The statement and a full list of signatories can be viewed here.

— — — — — — —

This statement has been endorsed by the following:

  • Archbishop of Wales, The Most Rev’d John D E Davies
  • Amos Trust
  • Associated Society of Locomotive Engineers and Firemen
  • Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union
  • Bishop of Bangor, The Right Rev’d Andy John
  • Bishop of St Davids, The Right Revd Joanna Penberthy
  • Campaign Against the Arms Trade
  • Communication Workers Union
  • Fire Brigades Union
  • GMB Union
  • Iona Community
  • Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions UK
  • Lawyers for Palestinian Human Rights
  • Muslim Association of Britain
  • National Education Union
  • Palestine Solidarity Campaign UK
  • Public and Commercial Services Union
  • National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers
  • Sabeel-Kairos
  • Scottish Palestinian Forum
  • Transport Salaried Staffs Association
  • University and College Union
  • UNISON
  • Unite the Union
  • War on Want



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