Not just illegal, settlement building is actually a war crime under the Rome Statute. “It involves the Occupying Power transferring some of its own civilian population to the territory it occupies,” explains Dr Morrison. “And under Article 8.2(b)(viii) of the Rome Statute the transfer, directly or indirectly, by the Occupying Power of parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies is a war crime.”
Since Israel has transferred well over 500,000 Israeli civilians into territory it occupies, and is still doing so, there is a prima facie case that Israelis responsible for the settlement programme, including the present Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu, are guilty of war crimes. Americans and others who fund settlement projects may be guilty of aiding and abetting war crimes.