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Spain condemns Israeli settlement announcement

Oct. 29, 2014 6:37 P.M. (Updated: Oct. 29, 2014 6:37 P.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- The Spanish government on Wednesday expressed its regret at an Israeli announcement of plans to build 1,000 homes for Jews in settlements across occupied East Jerusalem earlier in the week.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement that the decision "does not reflect the formally accepted target of negotiating with the Palestinians to seek a peaceful, global and lasting solution based on two states."

The ministry also reiterated its position, shared by the international community, that all forms of Israeli settlement construction in occupied Palestinian territories are illegal.

On Monday, Israeli authorities announced plans to move forward with 1,000 new homes in the East Jerusalem settlements of Har Homa and Ramat Shlomo, both built on land confiscated from local Palestinian communities.

The announcement came after four months of tensions between Palestinians and Jewish settlers in the city, with government officials promising to strengthen their grip on the city.

East Jerusalem has been under military occupation by Israel since 1967, and more than 200,000 Jews live in settlements located in and between Palestinian neighborhoods.

Palestinian areas suffer from a severe lack of services and widespread discrimination in all aspects of life.
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