United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon says Israel’s decision for the construction of more illegal settler units in the occupied West Bank obstructs efforts for peace in the region.“Settlements are illegal under international law, an impediment to peace, and cannot be reconciled with… Israel’s stated intention to pursue a two-state solution,” said Ban in a statement released in New York on Wednesday.
According to Press TV/Al Ray, the UN chief also urged Israel “to halt and reverse such decisions in the interest of peace.”
The remarks came after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu approved the construction of hundreds of illegal settler units in the West Bank.
Netanyahu’s office said on Wednesday that “the immediate construction of 300 homes in Beit El” settlement was authorized, adding that the planning for another 504 homes in Israeli-occupied East al-Quds (Jerusalem) was also approved.
Earlier in the day, the European Union also denounced the construction of illegal Israeli settlements in the occupied territories.
“We urge… Israel to urgently reverse recent decisions and put an end to settlement expansion,” EU said in a statement released on Wednesday.
The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) also denounced Tel Aviv’s decision.
“These settlement measures and war crimes are part of a plan by Israeli leaders to impose a ‘Greater Israel’ on historic Palestine and destroy … the chance for peace” in the region, PLO said in a statement hours after the announcement of the decision.
Israel has expanded its illegal settlement construction in the occupied territories in the past few years in defiance of international calls on the regime to end its expansionist polices.
Over half a million Israelis live in over 120 illegal settlements built since Israel’s occupation of the West Bank including East al-Quds in 1967.
Much of the international community considers the settler units as illegal because the territories were seized by Israel in a 1967 war and are hence subject to the Geneva Conventions, which forbid construction on occupied lands.
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