Helen Hayes backs MPs’ calls for UK government to reject Donald Trump’s Middle East “peace plan”

Katherine Johnston (03 February, 2020) Politics

'He calls it as peace deal, but it is no such thing,' says the Dulwich and West Norwood MP

19567Helen Hayes, MP for Dulwich and West Norwood

Helen Hayes is one of over 130 MPs calling on Boris Johnson to condemn Donald Trump’s plan for peace in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories.

Hayes described the Republican leader’s proposals as a “reckless approach to the Middle East – he calls it as peace deal, but it is no such thing.”

The open letter, signed by MPs expressed “grave concern” over the details announced on January 28 that have been rejected by Palestinian leaders.

The proposal recognises Israeli settlements built on occupied territories, would annex some of Palestine’s most fertile agricultural land, and would give security control of the West Bank to Israel.

The open letter to Boris Johnson said: “The long-standing position of the UK is that a negotiated peace settlement must be agreed to achieve a two-state solution based on the 1967 borders, leading to a safe and secure Israel living alongside a viable and sovereign Palestinian state that has secure and recognised borders, and with Jerusalem as a shared capital of both states.

“The vision presented by the US administration is one where Palestinians would have none of these: no true shared capital in Jerusalem, no sovereign control of its borders or security, and with Israeli control far beyond the green line.”

It would also fail to give hundreds of thousands of Palestinian refugees and their descendants still trapped in refugee camps across the Middle East the right to return to the lands they were forced from 70 years ago.

The letter goes on to describe Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision to annex the Jordan Valley, northern Dead Sea, and Israeli settlements built against international law in the West Bank as a “flagrant breach of international law” that “cannot be allowed to pass”.

As foreign secretary, Johnson himself had warned that without backing a two-state solution Israel would be left with “a kind of apartheid system”.

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