Photo Credit: Noam Revkin Fenton/FLASH90
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and then-Finance Minister Yair Lapid, September 23, 2014.

President Isaac Herzog is working to harness Prime Minister-designate Benjamin Netanyahu and outgoing Prime Minister Yair Lapid to join together in a move against the United Nations’ initiative asking the International Criminal Court in The Hague to rule whether Israel’s presence in Judea and Samaria is considered a permanent annexation, Reshet Bet Radio reported Sunday morning.

The November 11 UN move came one year after Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas’s speech at the UN General Assembly, in which he said that if Israel would not leave the “West Bank,” he would take the matter to The Hague and ask the ICC to issue a legal opinion on the legality of the occupation.


The ICC will determine whether Israel’s stay in Judea and Samaria can be defined as “continuous occupation,” meaning a de facto annexation, which many countries would consider to be a violation of international law as well as a string of UN Security Council resolutions. Only 17 countries opposed the proposal, including Canada, Germany, Australia, Austria, and the United States, which exerted heavy pressure to try and reject the request. The proposal was approved by 98 countries, including supposed friends of Israel from Ukraine to the United Arab Emirates and Morocco.

President Herzog asked Netanyahu to cooperate with the outgoing Prime Minister after their public phone call in which Netanyahu informed him that he was able to form a government. In the same conversation, the President asked Netanyahu to launch a joint appeal with Lapid to UN countries aimed at preventing the approval of the initiative. President Herzog is also expected to discuss the issue with Lapid, who has already been working on the issue as Prime Minister.

The President’s goal is to produce an integrated move that doubles the power of the fight against the dangerous PA initiative.


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