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Source: France
29 December 2011

Israel – Continued settlement activity

France is deeply concerned by the acceleration in provocative announcements and decisions relating to Israeli settlement activity in East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

It strongly condemns the decisions taken yesterday by the Israeli municipality of Jerusalem to authorize the construction of 130 new homes in the settlement of Gilo and a tourist complex in the Palestinian neighborhood of Silwan in East Jerusalem.

France also condemns the agreement concluded by the Israeli government to retroactively legalize the outpost of Ramat Gilad in the northern West Bank. All outposts must be dismantled, as Israel pledged to do so under the 2003 roadmap.

We reaffirm that all settlement activities are illegal under international law. As France and its European partners on the UN Security Council reaffirmed on December 20, the deliberate and systematic expansion of settlements threatens the two-State solution that is essential to ensuring the long-term security of Israel.

These projects must be abandoned in order to establish between the parties a climate of trust that is conducive to the resumption of direct negotiations.

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