Yesterday the Irish parliament voted to officially "condemn the ‘de facto annexation’ of Palestinian land by Israel". The Guardian says:
Ireland’s parliament has voted to condemn Israel’s “de facto annexation” of Palestinian land in what it said was the first use of the phrase by an EU government in relation to Israel. Government and opposition parties united on Wednesday night to back a motion that excoriated Israel’s treatment of Palestinians.
It is well established that Israeli colonies are illegal according to international law. In my understanding, if a country illegally occupies a land and builds settlements on it, then it is evidently annexing it. However from the first sentence of the article above it seems that this condemnation by Ireland is significantly stronger than any previous position on the topic in the EU, so I must miss something in the subtleties of diplomatic language:
- If there is an official position of the EU on Israeli settlements, what is it? If not, what is the main position of the EU countries?
- How much stronger is the wording of Ireland? Are there any particular diplomatic implications to calling it an annexation?