The UK’s foreign minister on Tuesday condemned the expansion of settlements in the West Bank and warned that the new Israeli government will have a “last chance” to revive the peace process and work for a two-state solution, or face “potentially disastrous consequences.”
“I hope that whatever Israeli government emerges…. that it will recognize that we are approaching the last chance to bring about such a solution,” Foreign Secretary William Hague said during an address to parliament.
“I condemn recent Israeli decisions to expand settlements,” he added. “I speak regularly to Israeli leaders stressing our profound concern that Israel’s settlement policy is losing it the support of the international community and will make a two-state solution impossible.”
Hague said the UK, EU and US could explore “incentives and disincentives” to induce Israel and the Palestinians to return to negotiations without preconditions, and said that “if we do not make progress in the coming year, people will increasingly conclude that a two-state solution has become impossible.”
“There is a clock ticking, with potentially disastrous consequences for the peace process,” he said.