Jewish Journal

Israel confirms new construction in East Jerusalem

by Brad A. Greenberg

March 24, 2010 | 12:52 pm


This ought to go over really well with the locals:

With strains still high between Israel and the United States over the issue of Jewish settlements, construction of a contentious Jewish housing project in a predominantly Arab neighborhood of East Jerusalem could start at any time, Israeli officials and experts said Wednesday

Jerusalem city hall gave the project the final go-ahead on March 18, days after city officials said the landowners had paid the required fees. Once the fees were paid, City Hall said in a statement on Wednesday, “approval was granted automatically.”

A spokesman for the White House said on Wednesday that it was seeking “clarification” on the building project. In New York, the United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, told the Security Council that “all settlement activity is illegal, but inserting settlers into Palestinian neighborhoods in Jerusalem is particularly troubling.”

He added: “This leads to tensions and undermines prospects for addressing the final status of Jerusalem.”

Those strains between the United States and Israel led President Obama to assure the world that there was “no crisis” in a relationship that has been essential to Israel.

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