Jordan condemns Israeli settlement plans

AFP, March 10, 2008

AMMAN (AFP) - Jordan on Monday condemned Israeli plans to build hundreds of new homes in occupied east Jerusalem and the West Bank, saying they "obstruct" regional peace efforts.

Jordan, which signed a peace treaty with the Jewish state in 1994,"rejects Israel's unilateral measures, particularly expanding settlements," the palace quoted King Abdullah II as telling Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas at talks in Amman.

Israeli authorities said on Monday they planned to build a new Jewish settlement of around 400 homes in the annexed eastern part of Jerusalem, which Palestinians want as the capital of their promised state.

At the weekend Israel also announced plans to build hundreds of new housing units in a settlement in the West Bank.

Palestinian officials have denounced the decision, saying it would shatter efforts to relaunch the peace process that has been stagnant since it was revived in late November.

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