U.S. urges Israel to reverse planned West Bank land appropriation

WASHINGTON Sun Aug 31, 2014 5:32pm EDT

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States sees Israel’s announcement on Sunday of a land appropriation for possible settlement construction in the occupied West Bank as “counterproductive” to peace efforts and urges the Israeli government to reverse the decision, a State Department official said.

Israel laid claim to nearly a thousand acres (400 hectares) in the Etzion settlement bloc near Bethlehem, a move which an anti-settlement group termed the biggest appropriation in 30 years and a Palestinian official said would cause only more friction after the Gaza war.

“We have long made clear our opposition to continued settlement activity,” the U.S. official said. “ This announcement, like every other settlement announcement Israel makes, planning step they approve and construction tender they issue is counterproductive to Israel's stated goal of a negotiated two-state solution with the Palestinians.”

“We urge the government of Israel to reverse this decision,” the official said in Washington.

(Reporting By Matt Spetalnick; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)

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Comments (4)
cautious123 wrote:
Words are ueless with the Israelis. Cut off their funding and you’ll have some leverage. Why the US hasn’t done this already just demonstrates how weak our government is in the face of aggressive lobbyists. Shameful and corrupt political system.

Aug 31, 2014 5:54pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
drauckerr wrote:
Sanctions against Russia didn’t stop them from aiding the Ukrainian rebels. Maybe a sternly worded note of disapproval like this will work better. After all, these sternly worded notes of disapproval have worked so well for the Palestinians.

Aug 31, 2014 6:28pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
breezinthru wrote:
This has been Israel’s intention all along. Not even a fool could look back on history and say this claim isn’t true.

The peace process is a sham to buy time while Israel slowly claims increments of Palestine for itself.

As before, the US advises that taking land like this runs counter to the two state idea necessary to the peace process and Israel, as before, proceeds anyway.

The US should immediately withdraw all financial and military support from Israel.

Aug 31, 2014 7:59pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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