US: Building is contrary to efforts to resume negotiations

Authorities announce plans for 4,000 units, 240 beyond Green Line; Erekat: "We strongly condemn the decision."

October 15, 2010 21:35
2 minute read.
Building at Beitar Illit settlement

311_Beitar Illit. (photo credit: Associated Press)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


The US expressed disappointment Friday at the 240 new housing units reportedly approved in Ramot and Pisgat Ze'ev.

“We were disappointed by the announcement of new tenders in east Jerusalem yesterday. It is contrary to our efforts to resume direct negotiations between the parties,” said State Department spokesman Philip Crowley to assembled reporters at a weekly briefing.

'Israel killing every opportunity to resume talks'
Fischer: We will intervene to cope with housing market
'13,000 West Bank housing units ready for construction'

Earlier on Friday, the Housing Ministry and Israel Lands Authority announced the sale of some 4,000 plots for building housing units, 240 of which are in the northern Jerusalem neighborhoods of Ramot and Pisgat Ze'ev located east the Green Line.

The Prime Minister's Office commented on the move stating that the decision came from Housing Minister Ariel Attias, Army Radio reported. According to the report, the PMO reiterated that there is currently no building moratorium in Jerusalem, only a delay by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to "prevent surprises by the sensitive timing, as in the past."

A strong reaction was issued by Chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat shortly after the release of the announcement. "We strongly condemn the decision,"  he told AFP. "We call upon the US administration to hold the Israeli government responsible for the collapse of the negotiations and the peace process as a result of this government's insistence on killing every opportunity for resuming negotiations," Erekat said. The building decision was "a clear answer to all international efforts, particularly US efforts to resume negotiations."

Egyptian  Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit said Friday that if Israel continues to build settlements, Arab nations might seek UN recognition of a Palestinian state without Israel's approval.

Also on Friday, Jordan's State Minister for Media Affairs and Communications Ali Ayed issued a statement condemning building plans, and calling on the international community to "stop Israeli provocations" and do whatever possible to resume and see through successful negotiations.

Petra News Agency reported Ayed as saying that Jordan supported the goals of the Palestinians "to restore their legitimate rights and establish their independent state on their national soil."

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Jisr az-Zarq
April 3, 2014
Residents of Jisr az-Zarqa beckon Israel Trail hikers to enjoy their town