WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The White House said on Friday a new Israeli settlement expansion plan was "counterproductive" and could make it harder to bring Israel and the Palestinians back to the negotiating table.
"We reiterate our longstanding opposition to settlements and East Jerusalem construction and announcements," White House spokesman Tommy Vietor said.
Israel plans to build thousands of new homes for its settlers in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, an Israeli official said earlier, defying a U.N. vote that implicitly recognized Palestinian statehood there.
The official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's conservative government had authorized the construction of 3,000 housing units.
"We believe these actions are counterproductive and make it arder resume direct negotiations or achieve of a two state solution," Vietor said. "Direct negotiations remain our goal and we encourage all parties to take steps to make that easier to achieve."
(Reporting By Matt Spetalnick)
Trending On Reuters
A website with links to a Turkish far-left group which has been holding a prosecutor captive in Istanbul said on its Twitter feed late on Tuesday that the hostage had been shot and injured, whilst his three captors had been killed. Full Article | Related Story
- U.S. says ready to work past deadline for Iran nuclear deal if needed
- Heavy clashes on Saudi-Yemen border; Hadi government pleads for troops
- Lufthansa says co-pilot told flight school of depression
- Electrical fault corrected, 'Big Bang' collider to restart soon
- Armed prisoner who fled Virginia hospital captured in Washington
China to punish Tencent, Youku Tudou, other video sites for pornography Full Article