ban ki-moon 311.
(photo credit: AP)
EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton called the planned demolitions in east Jerusalem an "obstacle to peace," reported the AFP Wednesday.
The demolitions are part of a planned archaeological development, and have caused recent controversy, including a 200-strong demonstration in Silwan last Sunday, where protesters clashed with police.
'Silwan project undermines trust'
Ashton called the demolitions illegal under international law and said they would make a two-state solution impossible. "If there is to be genuine peace, a way must be found through
negotiations to resolve the status of Jerusalem as the future capital of
The demolitions also drew fire last week
from UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, who labeled the plan
illegal and unhelpful to the peace process.
In an official
statement, the UN chief said, ”the planned moves are contrary to
international law, and to the wishes of Palestinian residents.” The
statement also cautioned against “provocative steps” that could
“heighten tensions in the city.”
“The secretary-general is deeply
concerned about the decision by the Jerusalem Municipality to advance
planning for house demolitions and further settlement activity in the
area of Silwan,” the statement said. “The current moves are unhelpful,
coming at a time when the goal must be to build trust to support
The US has come out against the demolitions as well. The
US is "worried" about Jerusalem's Silwan building project, the US
State Department said last week according to AFP.
"This is expressly the kind of step that we think
trust that is fundamental in making progress to the proximity talks and
ultimately in direct negotiations," said US State Department spokesman
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday that the projects were designed to improve the quality of life
of Silwan’s Arab residents and that they would not “surprise” the
Abe Selig contributed to this article.