Johnson tells Israel: Don't annex West Bank

Israel has been warned by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson against annexation in the occupied West Bank.

Writing in Israel's top-selling daily on Wednesday (July 1), Johnson said such a move would violate international law and harm its drive to improve relations with the Arab world.

Under a U.S. plan for Israeli-Palestinian peace, Israeli leaders decided in May that a cabinet debate on annexing parts of the West Bank could begin from July 1.

But with no agreement yet with Israel's main ally Washington on the scope and timing of the move, no cabinet session was scheduled for Wednesday (July 1).

Under the peace blueprint that U.S. President Donald Trump announced in January, Israel has said it intends to extend its sovereignty to Jewish settlements and the Jordan Valley in the West Bank, in up to 30% of the territory.

Palestinians, though, have rejected Trump's proposal.

They seek to establish a state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, with East Jerusalem as its capital.

Israel captured those areas in a 1967 war.

Palestinian leaders, the United Nations, European powers and Arab countries have all denounced annexation - and consider settlements that Israel has built on occupied land as illegal.