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Palestine turns to UN over Israel plan

Ramallah -

A West Bank official says the Palestinians will ask the UN Security Council to halt two massive Israeli settlement projects that he warns will destroy last hopes for a Mideast peace deal.

An Israeli women stands on a pavement in the West Bank Jewish settlement of Maale Adumim, near Jerusalem. If Israel carries out plans, E1 (East One), a hillside around Jerusalem, is destined to become the site of another Jewish settlement city. Credit: REUTERS

For now, Israel is advancing both projects, E-1 and Givat Hamatos, with some 7,500 apartments. The construction would cut off east Jerusalem, the intended Palestinian capital, from the West Bank. Israel revived plans for E-1 last week, after the UN recognised a state of Palestine in lands Israel occupied in 1967.

Palestinian official Saeb Erekat said on Wednesday the Palestinians are asking the Security Council to block construction because otherwise “the idea of peace ... will disappear.”

He says the US must halt construction itself if it wants to avoid casting a veto at the council, as in 2011. - Sapa-AP

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