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Posted on: July 17th, 2013 by AlYunaniya Staff No Comments

Israel to approve 1071 new settlements; EU bans funding in occupied areas

West bank

photo: IRIN

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Israel is set to approve the construction of 1,071 new homes across the West Bank, according to a statement by watchdog Peace Now on Tuesday.

The Settlement Subcommittee of the Higher Planning Council of the Civil Administration is expected to meet Wednesday to approve the plans.

Peace Now said that a government committee was expected to grant initial approval for plans to build 339 homes at Galgal and Almog settlements in the Jordan valley, Kfar Adumim northeast of Jerusalem and at Kochav Yaacov and Shilo near Ramallah, and another 732 new units in Modi’in Ilit, the West Bank’s biggest settlement, AFP reported.

“These approvals are part of an unprecedented wave of advancing settlement plans. This is yet another message by Israel to the US and the Palestinians that this government is not ready for peace,” Peace Now said in a statement.

The news came as US Secretary of State John Kerry landed in Amman at on a fresh trip to the Middle East focused to revive stalled peace talks.

Meanwhile, Israel condemned new guidelines by the European Union on Tuesday which ban EU funding and cooperation with Israeli institutions that operate in territory captured by Israel in 1967.

According to Israeli Haaretz, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu plans to call European leaders on Wednesday and ask them to help postpone the publication of the new European Union guidelines concerning Israeli settlements.

The guidelines are expected to be officially released on Friday and go into effect on January 1, 2014.

The Palestinians are demanding that Israel stop building settlements in the West Bank as a condition for getting back to the negotiating table which have stalled since 2010. Israel says talks should restart without preconditions.



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