The European Union expressed concern Friday about the Israeli Prime Minister’s plans to grant credits to some West Bank settlers.The EU is consulting its partners in the Middle East about the move.

The new credits, worth forty one million dollars, would benefit over a hundred and ten thousand settlers, according to Israeli officials.

The settlement issue is one of the most pressing in resolving the Israeli-Palestinian standoff, as Israeli settlements continue to expand in direct violation of signed agreements and international law.

Peace efforts, which resumed in 2007 after a seven-year hiatus, came to a standstill again when Israel launched a military offensive against Gaza late last year.

Palestinian leaders insist they will not return to the negotiating table unless there is a complete freeze on Jewish construction in the West Bank, including east Jerusalem.