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New Zealand issues travel ban on ‘extremist’ Israeli settlers

New Zealand issues travel ban on ‘extremist’ Israeli settlers
A visitor looks at a screen projection of 1,500 Israeli victims of the October 7 Hamas attack and the soldiers who were killed in the subsequent fighting in Gaza, National Library of Israel, Jerusalem, 31 January 2024. (Photo: EPA-EFE / ABIR SULTAN)

New Zealand issued travel bans against a number of “extremist Israeli settlers”, joining the US and other nations in cracking down on individuals who commit violent attacks against Palestinians in the West Bank.

New Zealand’s consistent position is that Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories are a violation of international law, Foreign Minister Winston Peters said in a statement on Thursday.

“Settlements undermine the prospects for a viable two-state solution,” he said. “Recent statements by some Israeli ministers about plans for further settlement construction are of serious concern and will raise tensions further between Israelis and Palestinians.”

Earlier this month, President Joe Biden signed an executive order allowing the US to impose more sanctions on Israeli settlers — and possibly government officials — involved in violence against Palestinians, while the UK also issued a travel ban and imposed financial sanction against four Israeli settlers.

New Zealand also on Thursday designated Hamas in its entirety — including its political wing — a terrorist entity following the 7 October massacre in Israel.

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