World, Middle East

Arab League condemns Israel's W. Bank settlements

UN, Turkey say 'illegal' settlements threaten two-state solution

25.01.2017
Arab League condemns Israel's W. Bank settlements

ISTANBUL

The Arab League on Tuesday denounced Israel's illegal settlements in Jerusalem as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu approved construction of 2,500 new settlement units in the occupied West Bank.

The construction on Palestinian territory "is seen as a serious ongoing violation of international law and a clear challenge to the will of the international community", 20 of the leagues member states said in a statement.

The Arab League wants the UN Security Council to prevent the settlements it said threatens peace, security, the seriousness of the international community and the effectiveness of UN decisions.

The statement said approval for the project is the response to a Security Council vote last month that demanded Israel "immediately and completely" stop all illegal settlement activities on occupied Palestinian territories.

UN Spokesman, Stephane Dujarric said Tuesday in New York that "Israel's unilateral actions that hamper peace are worrying".

Dujarric also said new UN chief Antonio Guterres is worried about Israel's decision, adding that "the Secretary-General does not have a plan B other than a two-state solution".

Netanyahu approved the construction, according to a statement issued by his office Tuesday.

“We are building and will continue to build,” he said in the statement.

The approval is the second of its kind since Donald Trump assumed the U.S. presidency Friday.

On Sunday, Jerusalem’s municipality approved construction of 566 new settlement units in East Jerusalem.

Turkey strongly condemned the decision and urged an immediate halt to the “illegal settlements” that are threats to peace.

“We call on Israel to quit insisting on pursuing this problematic approach that destroys the vision for the two-state solution by disregarding international law and human rights,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

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