Switzerland calls for an end to Israeli settlement plans in Gilo, East Jerusalem

Bern, Press release, 18.11.2009

The Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) is extremely concerned about Israel's plans to extend the Jewish settlement in Gilo, East Jerusalem, by 900 apartments. It appeals to the Israeli government to end these activities immediately and to stop all settlement projects in the occupied Palestinian territory.

The FDFA is monitoring events in East Jerusalem with concern, and it regrets the procedures adopted by the Israeli government. It calls on the Israeli government to refrain from building new apartments in Gilo, on Palestinian territory. East Jerusalem is an integral part of the occupied Palestinian territory. Israel is obliged by international humanitarian law to ensure the protection of the civilian population. In Switzerland's view, the Israeli settlement projects and the destruction of houses in the occupied Palestinian territory violate international humanitarian law, which prohibits an occupying power from destroying property or from re-settling civilians in the occupied territory.   The continuation of Israeli settlement activity is not compatible with a genuine peace process whose goal is to work out a comprehensive and lasting solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Address for enquiries:

Information FDFA
Bundeshaus West
CH-3003 Bern
Tel.: (+41) 031 322 31 53
Fax: (+41) 031 324 90 47
E-Mail: info@eda.admin.ch


Federal Department of Foreign Affairs