US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Monday that the United States no longer considers Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank to be contrary to international law, in a bid to shirk previous commitments.
The Associated Press has indicated that Washington intends to repudiate the 1978 declaration that the settlements violate international law.
Secretary of State Donald Trump has abandoned his predecessor Barack Obama's position on Israeli settlements, the secretary of state said in a speech on Thursday.
Pompeo is expected to say the Trump administration will no longer abide by the State Department's 1978 legal view that settlements are "against international law," an administration official said.
The move is likely to be welcomed by right-wing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, angering the Palestinians and putting the United States at odds with countries working to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which see settlements as illegal.
The US move follows the decision of the European Union Supreme Court, which passed last Tuesday and approved the legality of the labeling of Israeli goods produced in settlements in the territories occupied in 1967, which are exported to EU countries.
Settlement construction in the Occupied Territories is a violation of international law relating to laws and regulations in times of war and occupation, thus far consistent with the State Department's official position of 1978, which states that settlement construction in the West Bank "is contrary to international law."