Israel is constantly accused of 'stealing' Palestinian land and one constantly hears of the illegality of Israeli settlements in the West Bank. Reclaiming Israeli Land for instance has been an ongoing project of Israel's Women in Green who themselves have made accusations about Arabs Stealing Israeli Land.
Israel's 'Levy Committee' investigating the whole question of the legality or otherwise of Jewish buildings in the West Bank is shortly to have its report made public.
Below are some excerpts from an article written by Ted Belman about the upcoming report.
US agrees settlements are "not illegal"
By Ted Belman
July 11, 2012 (at Israpundit.com)
A report is soon to be released that says, the Fourth Geneva Convention (FGC) does not apply to Judea and Samaria aka West Bank and that Israel has every right to build settlements there.
In January of this year, PM Netanyahu set up the Levy Committee to investigate the legal status of unauthorized West Bank Jewish building. The Committee was headed by Supreme Court Justice (ret) Edmund Levy. It included Tel Aviv District Court Judge (Ret.) Tehiya Shapira and Dr. Alan Baker an international law expert, who was part of the team that devised the Oslo Accords.
Its 89 page Report was submitted to PM Netanyahu a few weeks ago -- yet to be formerly published, the contents are already well known.
It found that the settlements are not illegal. To reach this conclusion it first found that the Fourth Geneva Convention which applies "to all cases of partial or total occupation of the territory of a High Contracting Party" does not apply to Judea and Samaria because "Israel does not meet the criteria of 'military occupation' as defined under international law" ... as "no other legal entity has ever had its sovereignty over the area cemented under international law,"
Furthermore it found that there was no provision in international law which prohibited Jews settling in the area.
The UN and the EU have for decades repeated the mantra that the land is occupied and the settlements are illegal, both pursuant to the FGC but there has never been a binding legal decision on which they based their assertions. The US has been more cautious and considers the settlements "an obstacle to peace" or "illegitimate". Nevertheless, it leads the chorus in demanding an end to Israel's settlement construction.
The upshot of all this will be that Israel will end the de facto building freeze and start construction of settlements in earnest. It will also signal the end of the pursuit by Israel of the two-state solution. The Israeli center will no longer believe that Israel is an occupier and instead will believe that the land is theirs, which it is.
Presently there is significant movement in Israel advocating Israeli sovereignty over all of Judea and Samaria, even if that means making citizenship available to qualifying Arabs.
Article courtesy of Yehudit Katsover and Nadia Matar
Women For Israel's Tomorrow (Women in Green)
POB 7352, Jerusalem 91072, Israel