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Isareli approval of new settlements risks to off-set current peace talks with Palestine

By Alexandra Waldhorn

Israel has approved the construction of some 1,200 settlement homes in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, a move that could beset peace talks scheduled to continue on this Wednesday in Jerusalem. Palestinians said the go-ahead from Uri Ariel, the Israeli Housing Minister, is proof that Israel is not serious about pursuing talks currently led by the United States. Settlement building remains a contentious issue as Palestine wants to establish a state in Gaza, the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Continued settlement building, which most countries and the United Nations deem illegal, brought an end to the peace talks in 2010. Lior Amihai, an Israeli who monitors new settlement activity, explains that the new construction and marketing of settlement building is destructive.


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