IPF expresses grave alarm over the Knesset passage of the first reading of the Regulation Bill legalizing unauthorized settlements built on private Palestinian land. The damage that this bill does to Israel’s credibility cannot be overstated. In retroactively legalizing blatant illegal activity, the Knesset is moving toward a single binational state, eroding the rule of law, showing complete disregard for the authority of its attorney general and Supreme Court, and incentivizing further lawlessness and extortive behavior. Its ultimate passage will isolate Israel from its friends and allies, subject Israelis to international sanction and prosecution, and make Israel’s rhetorical support for a two-state solution completely hollow.

The increasing expansion of settlements across the West Bank is a genuine and serious obstacle to a just and fair resolution, and this bill exponentially elevates the problem that they pose. There is no scenario under which this bill makes Israel more secure, more democratic, or more just. We sincerely hope the Knesset will do the right thing by rejecting this bill.