Israel plans most settlement homes since 1992: minister

Israel has so far this year advanced its highest number of settlement projects since 1992, the defense minister said Sunday, despite warnings such plans will further cloud chances of a two-state solution.

Mr Trump has called on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to hold back on settlement building for now, but the right-wing Premier has been under intense pressure from settler leaders.

Since the inauguration of US President Donald Trump in January, the regime in Tel Aviv has stepped up its construction of settler units on occupied Palestinian land in a blatant violation of worldwide law.

Lieberman added that since January 1, Israel has approved the construction of 8,345 settler homes, including 3,066 that are slated for immediate construction.

A total of 3,178 housing units were advanced in a number of different settlements, the Peace Now non-governmental organisation, which tracks settlement growth, said on Thursday.

Peace Now could not immediately say whether it agreed that this year's figures were the highest since 1992, AFP news agency reported.

She reiterated support for a negotiated two-state solution in the region saying it is the only way to fulfill the legitimate aspirations of both parties and achieve just and lasting peace. But he has given no details about how he plans to restart talks, and there is deep scepticism over whether such an effort would have any chance of success.

After the 1967 war, Israel annexed east Jerusalem and deems the entire city its "indivisible and eternal capital", a status not recognized internationally. Israel has certainly been imperfect over the years, but at the conflict's core lies the Palestinian leadership's continued refusal to accept the legitimacy of Israel as a Jewish state and unwillingness to confront the substantive issues at the heart of the dispute.

"Any Israelis who choose to remain in the state of Palestine will live under Palestinian jurisdiction without discrimination and with full rights", a working draft for the peace agreement, which was obtained by Haaretz, said.

  • Leroy Wright