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UK condemns renewed Israeli settlement activity

April 5, 2012 11:33 P.M. (Updated: April 6, 2012 7:59 A.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- UK foreign secretary William Hague on Thursday condemned the announcement of new settlement activity in the occupied Palestinian territories.

"I am disappointed to release a statement on renewed Israeli settlement activity," Hague said.

"As the Occupying Power of the Palestinian Territories, the Israeli government has an absolute requirement to uphold international law and to fulfil its commitments. It is important that we voice our concerns when the Israeli government fails to do so.

“We and our EU partners are clear: systematic, illegal Israeli settlement activity poses the most significant and live threat to the viability of the two state solution. I condemn the decision to publish tenders for 872 units in the Israeli settlement of Har Homa, across the Green Line in East Jerusalem. The Israeli government's policy is illegal under international law, counter-productive, de-stabilising and provocative.

“It is also important that we support Israel when we see it doing the right thing and welcome positive steps. The UK had noted the absence of settlement announcements during the first few weeks of this year. And while different in scale, I welcome the difficult decision taken this week by the Israeli government to evacuate the single-house settlement of Beit Hamachpela in Hebron."
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