Benjamin Netanyahu wants the West Bank - Tsafrir Abayov / AP / SIPA

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pledged this Sunday to quickly annex parts of the occupied West Bank if he wins the legislative elections crucial to his political survival on Monday.

"I have four main missions now," the outgoing prime minister said in an interview with public radio, adding that annexing the Jordan Valley and settlements in the West Bank was his priority.

An electoral promise

"It will only be a matter of weeks, two months maximum I hope," said Benjamin Netanyahu in this final sprint of interviews on the eve of the legislative elections, the third in less than a year in Israel after two elections n having failed to separate him from his main rival Benny Gantz.

As the September legislative elections approached, Benjamin Netanyahu had promised the "immediate" annexation of the Jordan Valley, a strategic strip of land accounting for 30% of the occupied West Bank, in the event of an electoral victory.

Annexation work starting next week

But since this election without a clear winner, a key element has changed in this matter: the unveiling of the American project for the Middle East which provides for the annexation of the Jordan Valley and the Israeli colonies, measures contrary to international law and rejected as a whole by the entire Palestinian political class, from secular Fatah to Islamists from Hamas.

The Israeli Prime Minister also confirmed this Sunday that the "Israeli-American" committee in charge of establishing the precise cartography of the Palestinian Territories that Israel wishes to annex, had "started its work last week".

Jerusalem “indivisible” capital of Israel

More than 450,000 people live in Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank. The population of the colonies has jumped by almost 50% in the last decade marked by the uninterrupted presence of Benjamin Netanyahu in power, according to the authorities.

The latter, who is trying to mobilize his electorate of the nationalist right and procolonies for an election which promises to be close according to the latest polls, has multiplied in the last two weeks the announcements of housing project in the settlements in the West Bank, but also in East Jerusalem, territory already annexed by the Hebrew State.

The American project for the Middle East plans to make Jerusalem the "indivisible" capital of Israel, to the dismay of the Palestinians who want to make the eastern part of the city the capital of their future state.


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