Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reversed decades of U.S. foreign policy and declared that Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories will no longer be considered illegal.
The new American position on the settlements puts it at odds with the overwhelming majority of states around the world, including most of the U.S. allies.
Arguing that “arguments about who is right and who is wrong as a matter of international law will not bring peace,” Pompeo claimed that the new move would contribute to the peace process and might lead to a political solution between the Palestinians and the Israelis.
Rebukes swiftly followed the Trump administration’s announcement. Federica Mogherini, currently serving as the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, responded within an hour stating that the EU’s position remains the same: “All settlement activity is illegal under international law and it erodes the viability of the two-state solution and the prospects for a lasting peace,” Jordanian foreign minister Ayman Safadi tweeted that his country’s condemnation of the settlement building remained “unwavering.”