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Palestinian Authority condemns plan for new illegal Israeli settlements in occupied Jerusalem

The Palestinians want to make East Jerusalem the capital of their promised future state. [Getty]

Date of publication: 16 August, 2018

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The Palestinian Authority has condemned a plan to build 20,000 illegal settlement units in the occupied city of Jerusalem as a "declaration of war".
The Palestinian Authority has condemned a new plan to build 20,000 illegal Israeli settlement units in the occupied city of Jerusalem as a "declaration of war".

PA spokesman Yousef al-Mahmoud said on Thursday that the settlement plan was a crime committed by Israeli and US authorities, the official WAFA news agency reported.

"[This] is declaration of war on the existence of the city and its Arab and Islamic characteristics and an attempt to bury these distinguishing features," the agency quoted Mahmoud as saying.

He warned the move will "lead the region and the world into more conflict and violence".

On Wednesday, PA President Mahmoud Abbas said Palestinians will defeat the new settlement plan.

"We will not allow it and will not stop our struggle nor will we stay quiet until we stop this criminal act by the Israeli government," Abbas said, according to WAFA.

Israeli media reported on Wednesday that the Jerusalem municipality reached an agreement to build the settlements, some of which will be in occupied East Jerusalem.

International law views the West Bank and East Jerusalem as occupied Palestinian territories and considers all Israeli settlement construction there as illegal.

The move came as Israeli forces demolished residential apartment buildings in the Palestinian village of Issawiya and in East Jerusalem.

The demolitions were carried out under the pretext of not having a permit, which are near impossible for Palestinians to obtain.

Relations between the US and the Palestinian leadership have nosedived since President Donald Trump recognised Jerusalem as Israel's capital and moved the US embassy there.

The Palestinians want to make East Jerusalem the capital of their promised future state.

Israel rejects the widely held view that settlement expansion is one of the greatest obstacles to peace with the Palestinians.

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