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Hebron settlers lay foundations for new school

Sept. 27, 2010 9:10 P.M. (Updated: Sept. 28, 2010 7:10 P.M.)
HEBRON (Ma’an) -- Settlers in Hebron laid the foundations for a new kindergarten at the illegal Abraham Afino outpost on Monday, witnesses said.

Locals said hundreds of settlers held a ceremony in the West Bank city to lay the corner stone for the new building, and to celebrate the government's decision to construct a road connecting the illegal Kiryat Arba settlement to the Ibrahimi mosque in the city center.

A day earlier, settlers at the Beit Romani outpost held a similar stone-laying ceremony to mark the construction of a new school near the city's main square.

Construction has resumed in settlements and outposts across the West Bank, marking the end of a 10-month partial ban on settlement expansion.

Despite demands by the US, EU, UN and Palestinian negotiators, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has so far refused to extend restrictions on building on occupied land which would be a Palestinian state in a peace agreement.

The issue threatens to derail negotiations, relaunched less than one month ago in Washington. President Mahmoud Abbas has said he would withdraw from talks in the absence of a settlement freeze.

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