Monday, Aug. 31
Latest News
  1. Turkish court arrests British journalists on terror charges
  2. Locals: Boko Haram kills nearly 80 in NE Nigeria villages
  3. Austria smuggler crackdown as Europe divided over migrant crisis
  4. 'Largest ever' Med gas field found off Egypt
  5. Egypt muezzin suspended over 'Facebook prayer call'
  6. 3 Canadians, Pakistani, Nigerian among dead in Saudi fire
  7. 'A Sinner in Mecca' documents gay Muslim pilgrimage
  8. A year on, Yazidis so close yet so far from Iraq hub
  9. Delayed Egypt elections to start on October 17
  10. Blast at Syria's Palmyra prompts fears for famed temple
  11. 11 dead, dozens hurt in fire at Saudi oil giant housing complex
  12. Red Crescent: 7 bodies wash up on Libya beach
  13. Egypt elections to start on October 17
  14. Kuwaiti MP: Iran is 'true enemy' of Gulf Arabs
  15. Iran bars Barenboim, thwarting Tehran concert plan
  16. Qatar exports plunge over 40 pct in year
  17. Beheaded Syriac bishop beatified a century after death
  18. Hungary police make new arrest over Austrian migrant tragedy
  19. Berlin, Paris, London seek urgent EU meeting on migrant crisis
  20. French PM: Migrants fleeing war, persecution must be let in

Palestinian officials condemn Israel settlement plans

Nov. 6, 2012 8:15 P.M. (Updated: Nov. 7, 2012 6:18 P.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- PLO leader Hanan Ashrawi on Tuesday condemned reported plans for Israel to construct new settlement units in occupied East Jerusalem and in Ariel in the West Bank.

The Israel Land Administration on Monday published notices inviting bids from contractors to build on plots in Ramot and Pisgat Zeev, urban settlements that Israel has declared part of Jerusalem.

The plans call for the building of 607 new homes in Pisgat Zeev and 606 in Ramot. Tens of thousands of Israelis already live in the two areas.

"Such organized efforts to construct more units in the illegal settlements of Pisgat Zeev, Ramot, and Ariel are a deliberate attempt to breach international law and to destroy all chances for peace," Ashrawi said in a statement.

"With today’s announcement, it is obvious that such actions are in response to our decision to go to the United Nations, which serves to rescue the failed peace process and end the illegal occupation.

"As such, this sends a clear message to both the international community and to the Palestinians that Israel is more committed to annexing Palestinian land than committing to any peace resolution with the Palestinian people."

The Israeli NGO Peace Now said Tuesday that an additional tender for the construction of 72 homes in the West Bank settlement of Ariel was reissued on Monday after a previous notice failed to attract winning bidders.

Ashrawi urged the international community to intervene.

“We call on the European Union, the Quartet and other members of the international community to hold Israel accountable, demand that it cease all settlement activities and actions that defy international law and support our peaceful diplomatic efforts to achieve an independent Palestinian state based on 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital."

Mohammed Shtayyeh, a member of Fatah's central committee, also slammed the announcement.

"For those who still wonder if there is an Israeli partner for peace, the answer has been given," Shtayyeh said in a separate statement.

"This is all Netanyahu and Lieberman have to offer: The destruction of the two-state solution and the imposition of an Apartheid regime."

The Israeli decision to expand settlements in the occupied territories is another reason why the Palestinians must pursue a UN bid, he added.

Reuters contributed to this report.
Powered By: HTD Technologies
Ma'an News Agency
All rights reserved © 2005-2015