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UN human rights chief Bachelet calls Israeli plan to annex parts of West Bank ‘disastrous’

UN human rights chief Bachelet calls Israeli plan to annex parts of West Bank ‘disastrous’

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights on Monday said that Israel’s plan to begin formally annexing parts of the occupied West Bank would have “disastrous” consequences for the region. The warning from Michelle Bachelet adds to a growing chorus of international voices urging Israel not to carry out its plan.

“The precise consequences of annexation cannot be predicted,” Bachelet said in a statement. “But they are likely to be disastrous for the Palestinians, for Israel itself, and for the wider region.”

Israeli media have reported that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is considering scaling back his plans and is expected to annex just a small number of settlements in a largely symbolic move.

Netanyahu’s top coalition partner Benny Gantz said on Monday that a July 1 target date to begin discussing the proposed annexation of occupied West Bank land was “not sacred,” Reuters reported a source in Gantz’s party as saying.