UN officials concerned over new settlements

UN officials concerned over new settlements
Published today (updated) 13/03/2011 14:39

Serry (C) visits the Khan Younis refugee camp in the southern Gaza Strip on
December 6, 2009. [MaanImages/Hatem Omar]
BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Robert Serry expressed concern Sunday after news of an Israeli government okay for 500 new settlement homes in the occupied West Bank.

Speaking with Ma’an, Serry’s spokesman Richard Miron said the official was “concerned after seeing media reports announcing 500 new housing units in the occupied West Bank. Settlement activity is illegal and such a decision is not conducive to efforts to resume negotiations and achieve a negotiated Israeli-Palestinian peace.”

Israel’s decision to build more homes in occupied Palestinian lands came the day after the slaying of a settler family, which saw parents and three children stabbed to death in their settlement home in the northern West Bank.

Following the news of the attack, which Israel blamed on Palestinians, Serry also spoke out condemning the murder, and calling for a quick return to peace talks, as they only way forward.

The Middle East Quartet issued a similar statement, with representatives from the US, EU, UN and Russia joining in a statement condemning the killings, and emphasizing the “need to expedite efforts to achieve Israeli-Palestinian and comprehensive Arab-Israeli peace.”

Maan News Agency: UN officials concerned over new settlements.

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