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

    Multimedia Obama Calls on Americans to Help the Families of Its War Dead

    In last Memorial Day of his presidency, Obama lays wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery

    The Strife of the Party: Will Trump Permanently Alter Republicans?

    While billionaire mogul's no-holds-barred style, high-energy delivery are what rocketed him to nomination, they also have created rift between party elites and his supporters

    China's Education Reforms Spark Protest

    Beijing is putting a quota system in place to increase the number of students from poor regions attending universities

    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.
    Tech Startups Showcase Wares at Amsterdam Conferencei
    X
    Serginho Roosblad
    May 30, 2016 5:11 PM
    More than 20,000 tech enthusiasts, entrepreneurs and lovers of digital technology came together in Amsterdam recently at the Next Web Conference to discuss the latest developments in digital technology, look to the future and, of course, to connect. In recent years, there has been an explosion of so-called startup businesses that have created devices and applications that have changed the way we live; but, as Serginho Roosblad reports for VOA, there are pitfalls for such startups as well.
    Video

    Video Tech Startups Showcase Wares at Amsterdam Conference

    More than 20,000 tech enthusiasts, entrepreneurs and lovers of digital technology came together in Amsterdam recently at the Next Web Conference to discuss the latest developments in digital technology, look to the future and, of course, to connect. In recent years, there has been an explosion of so-called startup businesses that have created devices and applications that have changed the way we live; but, as Serginho Roosblad reports for VOA, there are pitfalls for such startups as well.
    Video

    Video US Military's Fallen Honored With Flags

    Memorial Day is a long weekend for most Americans. For some, it is the unofficial start of summer -- local swimming pools open and outdoor grilling season begins. But Memorial Day remains true to its origins -- a day to remember the U.S. military's fallen.
    Video

    Video Rolling Thunder Rolls Into Washington

    The Rolling Thunder caravan of motorcycles rolled into Washington Sunday, to support the U.S. military on the country's Memorial Day weekend
    Video

    Video A New Reading Program Pairs Kids with Dogs

    Dogs, it is said, are man's best friend. What some researchers have discovered is that they can also be a friend to a struggling reader. A group called Intermountain Therapy Animals trains dogs to help all kinds of kids with reading problems — from those with special needs to those for whom English is a second language. Faiza Elmasry has more on the New York chapter of R.E.A.D., or Reading Education Assistance Dogs, in this piece narrated by Faith Lapidus.
    Video

    Video Fan Base Grows for Fictional Wyoming Sheriff Longmire

    Around the world, the most enduring symbol of the U.S. is that of the cowboy. A very small percentage of Americans live in Western rural areas, and fewer still are cowboys. But the fascination with the American West is kept alive by such cultural offerings as “Longmire,” a series of books and TV episodes about a fictional Wyoming sheriff. VOA’s Greg Flakus recently spoke with Longmire’s creator, Craig Johnson, and filed this report from Houston.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Drawings by Children in Hiroshima Show Hope and Peace

    On Friday, President Barack Obama will visit Hiroshima, Japan, the first American president to do so while in office. In August 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city to force Japan's surrender in World War II. Although their city lay in ruins, some Hiroshima schoolchildren drew pictures of hope and peace. The former students and their drawings are now part of a documentary called “Pictures from a Hiroshima Schoolyard.” VOA's Deborah Block has the story.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese Rapper Performs for Obama

    A prominent young Vietnamese artist told President Obama said she faced roadblocks as a woman rapper, and asked the president about government support for the arts. He asked her to rap, and he even offered to provide a base beat for her. Watch what happened.
    Video

    Video Roots Run Deep for Tunisia's Dwindling Jewish Community

    This week, hundreds of Jewish pilgrims are defying terrorist threats to celebrate an ancient religious festival on the Tunisian island of Djerba. The festivities cast a spotlight on North Africa's once-vibrant Jewish population that has all but died out in recent decades. Despite rising threats of militant Islam and the country's battered economy, one of the Arab world's last Jewish communities is staying put and nurturing a new generation. VOA’s Lisa Bryant reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora