UN chief condemns Israeli plans for more settlements in occupied West Bank

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UNITED NATIONS, Jun 29 (APP):UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Wednesday condemned Israel’s recent advancement of plans for over 5,500 housing units in settlements in the occupied West Bank. 

In a strongly worded statement by the Deputy Spokesperson, Farhan Aziz Haq, he also denounced the retroactive regularization of three outposts adjacent to the settlement of Eli.

The UN chief reiterated that settlements are a flagrant violation of international law and relevant UN resolutions., and urged the Israeli Government to halt and reverse the expansion of settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, to immediately and completely cease all settlements activities there and to respect its relevant legal obligations.

The statement refers to the Monday’s advancement of plans for over 5,500 housing units in Israeli settlements in Area C of the occupied West Bank, including the retroactive regularization, under Israeli law, of three settlement outposts adjacent to the settlement of Eli.

Guterres emphasized that Israel’s persistent expansion of settlements, including in East Jerusalem, “deepens humanitarian needs, fuels violence, increases the risk of confrontation, further entrenches the occupation, and undermines the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination”.

The UN chief warned that the ongoing settlements are eroding the possibility of establishing a contiguous and viable sovereign Palestinian State, based on the pre-1967 lines and impede the ability to achieve a viable two-State solution, and a just, lasting and comprehensive peace.