- Last Updated: 3:08 AM, December 1, 2012
- Posted: 1:53 AM, December 1, 2012
Israel defied the UN General Assembly’s embrace of the Palestinians by approving construction of 3,000 new homes in Jewish settlements in the West Bank and east Jerusalem yesterday.
Last week, the United States urged Israel not to build in the corridor, saying it would snarl peace efforts.
But Israeli officials made clear that yesterday’s actions were a rebuke to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas for winning upgraded status at the United Nations in a historic vote Thursday.
“Israel is considering several actions in response to the unilateral UN move,” a senior Israeli official to Israeli media.
The move was quickly blasted by the Obama administration and the Palestinian Authority, which said it dashed any chance of reviving peace talks.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s inner Cabinet also gave a green light to construction in the “E-1” corridor connecting Jerusalem and the West Bank settlement of Maale Adumim.
Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat condemned Israel’s announcement, saying it was “defying the whole international community and insisting on destroying the two-state solution.”
After Thursday’s UN vote, several countries called for resuming peace talks that have been dead for two years. But Abbas reiterated yesterday that he won’t negotiate while Israel is building settler homes. Netanyahu has rejected any resumption based on Palestinian preconditions.