Holy Land: Foreign Secretary voices concern over Israeli settlement building


William Hague

William Hague

Foreign Secretary William Hague made the following comments Monday night, on new housing construction in Israeli settlements in  the West Bank  after the expiration of the moratorium.

Mr Hague said: "The international community continues to be deeply concerned by the current situation over Israeli settlement building. As part of Britain's support for direct talks between the Israelis and Palestinians, I met Secretary Clinton today. We discussed the issue and the way forward. Britain's long-standing position is that it is vital that both parties act in their long-term interest of successful negotiations leading to a two-state solution."

The Foreign Secretary's comments come as the moratorium on new housing construction in Israeli settlements in the West Bank expired at midnight Sunday.

Earlier on Monday, the Foreign Secretary said: "Yesterday I called on Israel to extend its moratorium on settlements and I am very disappointed to hear that the moratorium has not been renewed.  I remain very concerned that talks could falter on this issue and I call on Prime Minister Netanyahu and his Government to show leadership to resolve this so the parties can focus on the real challenges ahead. I shall make this clear to Israeli Foreign Minister Lieberman when I see him later today in New York."

Source: FCO

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