Jerusalem, Israel - On a tour to E-1, the corridor that extends between East Jerusalem and the West Bank settlement of Maale Adumim, Americans for Peace Now leaders on Sunday strongly condemned the government of Israel's intention to expedite settlement construction at this sensitive spot.
(Pictured: APN Study Tour Group in E-1 on Sunday, December 2, one day after the announcement of the Israeli Government)
An APN leadership delegation, on a visit to Israel, yesterday toured the strategic area, which is necessary for the contiguity and viability of a future Palestinian state. APN's leaders told representatives of international media organizations that construction at E-1 might be a death-blow to the two-state solution.
APN's President and CEO Debra DeLee said: "Building in E-1 punishes Israelis as much as it punishes Palestinians. Construction in E-1 would make it almost impossible to provide a future Palestinian state the contiguity it needs to be viable and cut it off from East Jerusalem. Without a viable Palestinian state in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, Israel is doomed to become a bi-national state, which means an end to the Zionist vision of an Israel that is both Jewish and democratic."
"As American Jews who love Israel and want to see a democratic Israel thrive as a secure, Jewish state and a respected member of the family of nations, we are appalled by the government of Israel's punitive measures in reaction to the Palestinian bid for international recognition. While the Palestinians are making efforts to advance statehood -- to establish a state that would live alongside Israel in peace and security, and elicit world recognition for it -- the government of Israel is moving in the opposite direction. By creating obstacles to the only political scenario that offers Israel a secure future, it is generating outrage worldwide, and isolating itself from the international community. As friends of Israel, we are hurt and incensed to see the government of Israel cutting off its nose to spite its face."
"From Israel, we again call on President Obama to personally intervene with Prime Minister Netanyahu and demand that his government reverse its decision to move ahead with plans to establish a peace-killing settlement in E-1."