The spokesperson of the European Union on Wednesday has denounced Israel approving construction permits for 181 housing units in the illegal settlement of Gilo, saying that this contributes to closing the southern settlement ring around East Jerusalem, thereby compromising contiguity between East Jerusalem and the West Bank, which is crucial for the viability of the two-state solution.
The settlement is located south of Jerusalem and north of Bethlehem. central West Bank.
“We regret that Israel has proceeded with these building permits despite continuous serious international concern and objections ever since these plans were first announced,” EU said.
Statement added that the steady and systematic acceleration of settlement expansion goes directly against the recommendations of the Quartet Report.
Settlements are illegal under international law, constitute an obstacle to peace and seriously call into question Israel’s commitment to a negotiated two-state solution, as reaffirmed in numerous Foreign Affairs Council Conclusions, most recently in July 2015 and January 2016.