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Israel advances plans to build 3,658 new settler homes

Published on Dec 20, 2012 5:52 AM
A Palestinian laborer work on a construction site in the east Jerusalem settlement of Ramat Shlomo, on December 18, 2012.  -- PHOTO: AFP

JERUSALEM (AFP) - Israel pushed forward with plans for 3,658 new settler homes on Wednesday, most of them in annexed east Jerusalem, sparking Palestinian fury and condemnation at the United Nations (UN).

Israel's plans for the construction of 2,610 homes in the as yet unbuilt Givat HaMatos district in east Jerusalem was quickly followed by the announcement of tenders for another 1,048 units, mostly in the occupied West Bank.

Wednesday's developments came two days after the approval of another 1,500 homes in east Jerusalem, which prompted Washington to denounce Israel for its "pattern of provocative action."

The UN and all UN Security Council powers except the United States (US) on Wednesday condemned Israel's heightened settler construction as a threat to flagging peace efforts.

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