“Illegal Settlements”

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According to many international law experts, Israel’s communities do not contravene international law and Israel has legal claim to the lands it regards as Judea and Samaria. Jews have legitimate claims to Judea and Samaria according to international law as these lands were promised to the Jewish people at the San Remo Conference (1920) which saw the establishment in British-mandate Palestine of a national home for the Jewish people. Furthermore, the U.S. is now of the position that Israeli settlements are not “illegal”. There are a number of reasons for this, primarily because the land in question (commonly called the “West Bank”) was previously occupied by Jordan prior to the 1967 Six Day War which was aggressively launched by pan-Arab armies, but Jordan has long since relinquished its claim to the land. There is no sovereign Palestinian state on the land in question, nor has there ever been one, and thus the land is not the legal possession of any Palestinian sovereign. Furthermore, there is no element of international law that can be used to prohibit the voluntary return of individuals to the towns and villages from which they or their ancestors had been previously evicted by forcible means. As Israel disputes this lexicon, for the media to adopt it is not objective and neutral, nor is it fact-based. Effectively, when media use this term they engage in partisan journalism and adopt the Palestinian-Arab narrative.

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