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Palestinian groups condemn US funding of science projects in illegal settlements

Different Palestinian groups denounced the US decision and accused the US of “complicity in the aggression on the Palestinians.”

Hamas denounced the US decision and accused the US of “complicity in the aggression on the Palestinians” and backing the Zionist regime's plan to expand its occupation policy in the West Bank.


The PLO also strongly condemned the US decision and accused the Trump administration of encouraging Israel to “perpetuate its control over the land and the people of Palestine and deny them their inalienable right to self-determination.”


The PLO said in a statement that the international community has a responsibility to exclude illegal Israeli settlements from any deals with Israel. It called on educational institutions worldwide not to cooperate or engage with any Israeli institution operating “in the occupied State of Palestine.”


PLO Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi said that the Trump administration was “preempting US elections by recognizing Israeli annexation of the West Bank.” She said that the US-Israel agreement is a “blatant unlawful act” and accused the Trump administration of funding Israel’s “colonization of Palestinian land and dispossession of its people with US taxpayer dollars.”


The US administration and the Israeli government, Ashrawi added, “are scurrying to bring about this de facto recognition of Israeli annexation at the eleventh hour. The Trump administration thinks it can deliver Palestine to Israel on a silver platter.”


The Palestinian Authority on Wednesday denounced the decision to expand US funding of Israeli scientific cooperation to include research projects in illegal settlements as “a serious precedent that is condemned, rejected and could not be tolerated.”


The PA also was reacting to a decision by the US administration to lift a ban that had prohibited US taxpayer funding for Israeli scientific research conducted in illegal settlements.


“This step indicates an active US complicity in the occupation of the Palestinian territories and a consolidation of [US President Donald] Trump’s administration of violating the international law and the United Nations resolutions which have condemned settlement activities in all their forms, most recently of which was [UN] Resolution 2334,” said Nabil Abu Rudaineh, spokesman for the Palestinian presidency. “All settlements in the occupied territories are illegal, and any US action in this respect is illegal and constitutes a violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention."


Abu Rudaineh accused the Trump administration of attempting to “help Israel cement its occupation of the Palestinian territories” and said that “such policies would never give legitimacy to anyone as Israeli settlements are doomed.”