2020-10-16 23:02:22 UTC
Oct. 16, 2020 By Reuters
PARIS — France, Germany, Britain, Italy and Spain are deeply concerned
about Israeli plans to build new settler homes in the occupied West
Bank, the countries said in a joint statement on Friday.
Israel this week approved more than 1,300 new settler homes in the West
Bank, bringing to a total of over 4,000 the number of such homes that
are in the pipeline, according to an Israeli settlement watchdog.
"We are deeply concerned by the decision taken by the Israeli
authorities to advance more than 4,900 settlement building units in the
occupied West Bank," the joint statement said.
"The expansion of settlements violates international law and further
imperils the viability of a two-state solution to bring about a just and
lasting peace to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict," it said.
Most countries view settlements Israel has built in territory captured
in the 1967 Middle East war as illegal and as an obstacle to peace with
The United States and Israel dispute this.
The Palestinians hope to build part of a future state in the West Bank,
while Israel cites historical and biblical links to the area and around
450,000 of its settlers live there, among 3 million Palestinians.