News / Middle East

Palestinians Angry About Israeli Settlement Expansion

An ultra-Orthodox Jewish man walks in Ramat Shlomo, a religious Jewish settlement in an area of the occupied West Bank, in East Jerusalem, claimed by both Israel and Palestinians, December 18, 2012.An ultra-Orthodox Jewish man walks in Ramat Shlomo, a religious Jewish settlement in an area of the occupied West Bank, in East Jerusalem, claimed by both Israel and Palestinians, December 18, 2012.
x
An ultra-Orthodox Jewish man walks in Ramat Shlomo, a religious Jewish settlement in an area of the occupied West Bank, in East Jerusalem, claimed by both Israel and Palestinians, December 18, 2012.
An ultra-Orthodox Jewish man walks in Ramat Shlomo, a religious Jewish settlement in an area of the occupied West Bank, in East Jerusalem, claimed by both Israel and Palestinians, December 18, 2012.
Scott Bobb
— Palestinian leaders are reacting with anger to Israel's announcement that it intends to move ahead with the construction of hundreds of homes for Jews on East Jerusalem land that is claimed by the Palestinians.

Palestinian leaders on Tuesday protested the Israel government's final approval of the construction of 1,500 new homes in the Jewish area of Ramat Shlomo in East Jerusalem.

A spokesman for the Fatah movement, Ahmed Assaf, said the move violated international law and amounted to war crimes.

He said nobody in the world recognizes this Israeli decision. It will be opposed by Palestinians and on the political level will push Palestinians to the International Court of Justice.

Israeli construction of new housing in Jerusalem can take years because of the number of hearings and approvals needed before the land can be cleared.

The building plans for Ramat Shlomo were first revealed by Israel two years ago during a visit by U.S. Vice-President Joe Biden. The announcement took the U.S. government aback and caused sharp condemnation from Washington.

The Israeli government announced plans earlier this month to build several thousand homes in other settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Palestinian and Israeli critics say this construction would create a buffer of Jewish districts around East Jerusalem, which both sides claim. It also would effectively sever land links between the northern West Bank, including Ramallah, and the southern West Bank, which includes Bethlehem.

Israeli supporters of the settlement expansion say special roads and tunnels could be built to connect the two Palestinian cities.

A spokesman for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Ofer Geldman, said the government never said it would not build in neighborhoods in what he called the Israeli capital.

He said this decision does not change anything on the ground. If the Palestinians want to reach a solution to this problem, he said, why do they not return to the negotiating table?

The Palestinians have refused to resume peace talks with Israel as long as it continues settlement construction in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. The international community considers the construction illegal, a position that Israel rejects.

Israel announced the latest settlement expansion plans last month after the U.N. General Assembly voted overwhelmingly to upgrade the Palestinian Authority status at the world body to that of non-member observer state.

The Palestinians view this as international recognition of their long-desired state. Israel fears the new status would allow the Palestinians to access U.N. institutions, such as the International Court of Justice.

You May Like

Lebanese Media Unite to Support Palestinians in Gaza

Joint newscast billed as Arab world’s first unified news bulletin in support of Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip More

Photogallery Australian PM Alleges ‘Coverup’ at MH17 Crash Site

Meanwhile, Russia's ambassador to Malaysia denies plane's black boxes were opened before they were handed over to Malaysian officials More

Despite Advances in AIDS Treatment, Stigma Lingers

Leading immunologist tells VOA that stigma is often what prevents those infected with disease from seeking treatment More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: john237 from: usa
December 20, 2012 5:20 PM
Yes, Israel is the super power, who has no laws, no boundaries, no ethics, no morality, no shame, no humanity and no LOYALTY to any one including his creators and care takers. Well in short it is an outlawed nation and only Almighty will take care when the right time comes.


by: mark from: USA
December 18, 2012 2:24 PM
If the Palestinians are so angry they can always sit down with Israel and negotiate.

It is kind of hard to make demands when you have nothing to offer.

Mr. Abbas went to the UN and won his vote. He came back and told his people they now have a nation.

Nothing has changed. Nothing ever changes with the Palestinians. They have had many chances to have there own nation. Going to the UN got them nothing. Wave your little flag and show everyone your little piece of paper that says you have rights Mr. Abbas your actions have consequences you did what is good for you Mr, Netanyahu will do what is good for his people. Both Jewish and Arabs alike.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Formi
X
July 22, 2014 10:26 AM
Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Chicago’s Argonne Lab Developing Battery of the Future

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science awarded a $120 million grant to a new technology center focused on battery development - headquartered at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago, Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there scientists are making the next technological breakthroughs in energy storage.
Video

Video In NW Pakistan, Army Offensive Causes Massive Number of Displaced

Pakistan’s army offensive in North Waziristan has resulted in the large-scale displacement of the local population. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from northwest Pakistan where authorities say around 80 percent of the estimated 1 million internally displaced persons [IDPs] have settled in Bannu district, while much of the remaining 20 percent are scattered in nearby cities.
Video

Video Kurdish Peshmerga Force Secures Kirkuk, Its Oil

The Kurdistan regional government has sent its Peshmerga troops into the adjacent province of Kirkuk to drive out insurgents, and to secure the area's rich oil fields. By doing this, the regional government has added a fourth province to the three it officially controls. The oil also provides revenue that could make an independent Kurdistan economically strong. VOA’s Jeffrey Young went out with the Peshmerga and filed this report.
Video

Video Malaysia Reeling: Second Air Disaster in Four Months

Malaysia is reeling from the second air disaster in four months involving the country’s flag carrier. Flight 340 vanished in March and despite an extensive search, no debris has been found. And on Thursday, Flight 17, likely hit by a surface-to-air missile, came apart over eastern Ukraine. The two incidents together have left more than 500 people dead. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Kuala Lumpur.

AppleAndroid