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Calls by EU for crackdown on settlement expansion

May 9, 2015 6:54 P.M. (Updated: May 10, 2015 10:31 A.M.)
BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) --The European Union confirmed Saturday that the decision by Israeli authorities to expand the illegal settlement of Ramat Shlomo northeast of Jerusalem is illegal and threatens future peace in the region.

"Israel's determination to continue its settlement policy despite the urging of the international community, not only threatens the viability of the two state solution but also seriously calls into question its commitment to a negotiated agreement with the Palestinians, EU representative Katherine Ray said in a statement published from Brussels.

The construction of 900 homes in the Jewish-only Ramat Shlomo settlement was approved by the Israeli District Planning and Building Committee earlier this week.

The plan was initially proposed in 2010 during a visit by US Vice President Joe Biden, angering the White House and threatening talks going on at the time between Israeli and Palestinian officials.

EU's Foreign Ministers unanimously called on Israel to reverse decisions for further settlement construction in occupied East Jerusalem in November 2014, but to no avail.

Ray added on Saturday that as settlements are illegal under international law, the EU and its Member States are "committed to ensure continued, full and effective implementation of existing EU legislation and bilateral arrangements applicable to settlements."

The approval for the Ramat Shlomo expansion came as Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu was in the final stages of piecing together a coalition government that will include the far-right Habayit Hayehudi (Jewish Home), which strongly backs settlement building and opposes a Palestinian state.

In the run up to his reelection in March, Netanyahu vowed to step up settlement construction in occupied East Jerusalem, which Israel captured in 1967 and later annexed in a move never recognized by the international community.
Tobias / USA
-1- Israel is a sovereign state, and the formerly Jordanian West Bank is not. -2- Jews have equally strong and legitimate claims (to "Palestinians) to these formerly Jordanian lands. And, -3- EU calls have no weight at all, regarding the future of these formerly Jordanian lands.
10/05/2015 00:23
Two Truths / USA
-1- The EU has not ability to "crackdown on settlement expansion", and
-2- The Sovereign State of Israel has no reason to heed EU "calls", and
many reason to resettle Jews on their ancestral homeland of Judea !!
10/05/2015 04:59
Legal Eagle / Australia
Don't the tired old Zionist trolls get sick of recycling the same old pap that only THEY believe? Or is the pay too good to refuse? Whatever, it doesn't change the reality that Israel is in BREACH OF INTERNATIONAL LAW and is a ROGUE STATE that should be suspended, if not expelled from, the UN.
10/05/2015 13:58
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