UN chief condemns Israeli plans for more settlements in West Bank

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UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Wednesday condemned the latest Israeli government approval for thousands of additional homes in West Bank settlements, a UN spokesman said Wednesday, reported Xinhua.

The secretary-general condemns Monday's advancement of plans for over 5,500 housing units in Israeli settlements in Area C of the occupied West Bank, including the retroactive regularization, under Israeli law, of three settlement outposts adjacent to the settlement of Eli, said Farhan Haq, the deputy spokesman for Guterres, in a statement.

Area C of the West Bank is under full Israeli civil and security control.

"The secretary-general reiterates that settlements are a flagrant violation of international law and relevant United Nations resolutions. He once again urges the government of Israel to halt and reverse the expansion of settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory, to immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, and to fully respect its legal obligations in that regard," said the statement.

Israel's persistent expansion of its settlements in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, deepens humanitarian needs, significantly fuels violence, increases the risk of confrontation, further entrenches the occupation, and undermines the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination, it said.

"These ongoing settlements are eroding the possibility of establishing a contiguous and viable sovereign Palestinian state, based on the pre-1967 lines, thereby impeding the ability to achieve a viable two-state solution, and a just, lasting and comprehensive peace," said the statement.

Source: www.dailyfinland.fi

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