|PA call on EU to punish Israel over Jerusalem dispute|
|Written by Chris Perver|
|Tuesday, 11 December 2012 19:13|
The Palestinian Liberation Organization has called on the European Union to reconsider its political and commercial ties with Israel.
The rift between Israel and the Palestinian Authority has grown in recent weeks following the decision at the UN General Assembly to upgrade the PA's status to that of non-member state. The Israeli government subsequently announced its intentions to press ahead with controversial plans to develop the E1 area, a plot of land that links the suburb of Ma'ale Adumim with the main city of Jerusalem. That announcement drew immediate condemnation from the European Union and the United Nations, labelling it a plan that would essentially bury the 'two-state solution', by dividing the 'West Bank' into two. That claim is of course nonsense. But it highlights the deepening division between Israel, and the rest of the world, which refuses to recognize Israeli sovereignty in the east of the city. EU foreign ministers recently announced that all its agreements made with Israel “must unequivocally and explicitly indicate their inapplicability to the territories occupied by Israel in 1967, namely the Golan Heights; the West Bank, including east Jerusalem; and the Gaza Strip”. And buoyed on by their popular support from the UN General Assembly, the PA is pressing for the EU to take punitive measures against Israel's 'illegal occupation' of 'Palestine'...
Quote: ““We call on the EU to hold Israel accountable for its illegal occupation of Palestine, reconsider its political and trade relations with Israel and agreements, including the EU-Israel Association agreement, implement a ban on Israeli settler products and extremist settlers, and rescue the chances for peace and the establishment of an independent Palestinian state based on 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital,” Ashrawi said.
But if the 'two-state solution' has been buried by anyone, it has been buried by Hamas, which resolutely refuses to recognize Israel's right to exist. Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal addressed an half a million strong gathering in Gaza city last weekend. Vowing never to recognize Israel or give up an “inch of land”, he told the crowd Hamas intends to “free Jerusalem inch by inch, stone by stone”.
Quote: “"Palestine is ours, from the river to the sea and from the south to the north. There will be no concession on an inch of the land," he told the crowd on his first visit to Gaza. "We will never recognise the legitimacy of the Israeli occupation and therefore there is no legitimacy for Israel, no matter how long it will take."
Iranian technology has of course drastically improved the military capability of Hamas, bringing Jerusalem and Tel Aviv within range of its rockets, as demonstrated during the latest conflict with Israel. The Bible foretold of a time when Israel's enemies would be in siege against Judah and Jerusalem. The ancient borders of the tribe of Judah encompassed all of the modern day Gaza Strip, as well as the southern half of the so-called 'West Bank', territory that is now under threat from the Palestinian terrorist organizations. The Bible also predicted that the status of Jerusalem would become a global concern in the last days. Today Turkish President Abdullah Gul warned that Israel was "playing with fire" by pressing ahead with the east Jerusalem development plan, and that "Israel has become a burden to its allies".
According to Scripture, the city of Jerusalem will one day be redivided. Zechariah 14:2 and Revelation 11:2 state that in the days immediately prior to the return of the Messiah, east Jerusalem and the Temple Mount will once again come under Gentile control for a limited period. The fact that the United Nations, “all the people of earth”, are now rebuking Israel for building on this land, and are pressing for a 'Palestinian' state to be established in this territory, shows us just how close we may be to the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ.
As Christians we support Israel. Not because they are more righteous than any other people, for they are not (Deuteronomy 9:6). And not because we believe they have any more rights than Arabs to live in that land. For the Bible commanded the Jewish people to take care of the foreigner that lived in their midst (Exodus 22:21). But we support Israel because the descendants of Jacob have a divine right to be in the land that God gave to their ancestors (Exodus 6:4). And we believe that God's ancient promise to bring them back to that land has and is being fulfilled today (Ezekiel 37:22). Of course the present situation is grievous. But we need to recognize that this conflict is in the permissive will of God. For the Lord says, “I will make Jerusalem a burdensome stone”, and “I will gather all nations together against Jerusalem”. And His purpose in all of this is to ultimately bring the nation of Israel to a place of repentance and recognition of the one that they once rejected (Zechariah 12:10). And when the nation calls upon Him for forgiveness, He will return and defeat their enemies, and rule over His people forever. And of the increase of His government and of peace there shall be no end (Isaiah 9:7). What a day that will be! Are you looking forward to that day? Have you trusted in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation? Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you shall be saved (Acts 16:31).