West Bank settlements

West Bank settlements

November 26, 20192 min read

This month, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced a shift in U.S. policy toward settlements in the Israeli-occupied West Bank. Pompeo announced that the Trump administration does not view the settlements as inconsistent international law, and rescinded a 1978 state department legal opinion that held that view. The move now leaves the issue of individual settlements up to Israeli courts. 

Assistant Professor Sandy Marshall has spent time as a volunteer instructor in a Palestinian refugee camp in the West Bank and returned to the region this past summer to advance his research into the experiences of Palestinian refugee children. A human geographer, he has conducted extensive research into the impact of conflict, division and displacement on children and youth in the Middle East. 

Asked for a brief comment on the shift in U.S. policy, here’s what Marshall had to say:

“Coming on the heels of the U.S. embassy move to Jerusalem and recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights, the change in policy on West Bank settlements is another nail in the coffin of a negotiated peace-settlement based on the two-state solution, represent U.S. rejection of broad international legal consensus . This move undermines any remaining legitimacy the U.S. has in the region as a peace-broker and threatens further destabilization of the region.”

If you're interested in talking with Professor Marshall as you continue to cover this important topic, please reach out to Owen Covington, director of the Elon University News Bureau, at ocovington@elon.edu or (336) 278-7413. Professor Marshall is available for phone, email and broadcast interviews.

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