Comment by the Information and Press Department on the plans to build new Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem
On November 15, the Israeli authorities announced a tender for the construction of over 1,000 units of housing in the Givat HaMatos neighbourhood in East Jerusalem. This decision contradicts the international legal foundation for a settlement in the Middle East. The construction of new housing in this area will separate East Jerusalem from Bethlehem, thereby interrupting the territorial continuity of the Palestinian state, which is envisaged by UN resolutions and is indispensable for viability.
We reaffirm Russia’s position of principle on the illegal character of Israeli settlements on the West Bank of the River Jordan. Such actions by Israel are an obstacle to reaching a fair Palestinian-Israeli settlement and establishing a durable and comprehensive peace in the Middle East.
We urge everyone to refrain from any steps that might undermine the prospects for resuming a direct Palestinian-Israeli dialogue on the fundamental issues of a final status.