Following is the text of a Joint Statement by the Foreign Ministers of France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United States:
We – the Foreign Ministers of France, Germany and Italy, the Foreign Secretary of the United Kingdom, and the Secretary of State of the United States – are deeply troubled by the Israeli government’s announcement that it is advancing nearly 10,000 settlement units and intends to begin a process to normalize nine outposts that were previously deemed illegal under Israeli law. We strongly oppose these unilateral actions which will only serve to exacerbate tensions between Israelis and Palestinians and undermine efforts to achieve a negotiated two-state solution.
We continue to support a comprehensive, just, and lasting peace in the Middle East, which must be achieved through direct negotiations between the parties. Israelis and Palestinians both deserve to live in peace, with equal measures of freedom, security, and prosperity. We reaffirm our commitment to helping Israelis and Palestinians fulfill the vision of an Israel fully integrated into the Middle East living alongside a sovereign, viable Palestinian state. We continue to closely monitor developments on the ground which impact the viability of the two-state solution and stability in the region at large.