As a Norwegian I want to express my deepest apologies for my countries shady behavior while working as a mediator in the Oslo process. I hope this is something that will be brought forward in the ICC as an unclean work process, and that the people behind it will be held responsible for their actions!
|Monday, 15 December 1997 00:00|
The first session of the day was on the subject, “Israeli Settlements in the Occupied Territories.” The session was chaired by Iyad Barghouthi, Professor of Political Sociology at An-Najah National University and Director of Al-Haq – Law for the Service of Man, Ramallah.The first speaker was Geoffrey Aronson, Editor of Report on Israeli Settlements in the Occupied Territories and author of Israel, Palestinians, and the Intifada: Creating Facts on the West Bank. His talk was entitled, “Settlement Policy of the Netanyahu Government.” The vast majority of settlers are not “extraordinary people,”
Aronson said. They represent the mainstream in Israeli society. If such were not the case there would not be as strong a coalition as there is in Israel in support of settlement maintenance and expansion.Addressing the question,
“How do settlements affect the status of the Occupied Territories,” Aronson said that international law would conclude that settlements are illegal and temporary manifestations of Israeli occupation.
Aronson then posed the question of whether land could be returned in the Occupied Territories. The Israeli decision to dismantle settlements in Sinai may be a good guide as to what may happen, he said. Finally he asked whether settlements are an obstacle to peace.It depends, he answered, on the kind of peace one is talking about. Settlements are an impediment to peace, but there are ways that they can be accommodated.
Netanyahu has changed the context in which settlements are viewed.
Musa Dweik, Professor of International Law, College of Law, Al-Quds University, Jerusalem, explored the legal basis of Palestinian sovereignty and the illegal basis of the settlements in his talk,
These rights, Dweik contended, are legitimate and inalienable.