US criticises Israel over plans for new settlement homes

Июль 6, 2016     Автор: Юлия Клюева
US criticises Israel over plans for new settlement homes


The US has criticised Israeli plans to build hundreds of new homes in existing settlements in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem.

State department spokesman John Kirby called the plans the "latest step… in a systematic process of land seizures".

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu authorised the plans on Tuesday, Israeli officials say.

The Middle East Quartet on the peace process also recently criticised Israel's settlement project.

Citing an Israeli official, the Associated Press reports that the plans include 560 new homes in Maale Adumim, just outside Jerusalem, as well as nearly 200 in the city itself. The plan also calls for more than 600 new homes in an Arab neighbourhood of east Jerusalem, AP says.

Mr Kirby said: "If true, this report would be the latest step in what seems to be a systematic process of land seizures, settlement expansions and legalizations of outposts that is fundamentally undermining the prospects for a two-state solution."

The plans were also sharply criticised by UN chief Ban Ki-moon.

"This raises legitimate questions about Israel's long-term intentions, which are compounded by continuing statements of some Israeli ministers calling for the annexation of the West Bank," Mr Ban's spokesman said in a statement.

The Quartet report criticised Israel for building settlements, denying Palestinian development and designating land for exclusive Israeli use.

The Palestinians want an independent state in the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem, areas captured by Israel in a 1967 war.

Peace talks between the two sides broke down in 2014, leading to a resurgence in violence in the region.