Israeli PM vows more Jewish settlements if re-elected

17 March 2015 Tuesday

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed on Monday to build thousands of new Jewish-only settlement units in occupied East Jerusalem if re-elected to the premiership.

“Despite international pressure, we will build this neighborhood,” he was quoted as saying by Israel’s Public Radio.

He lashed out at the electoral list of the Zionist Union coalition – his main electoral rival – saying it would bring Palestinian faction Hamas to East Jerusalem.

“If [former Justice Minister Tzipi] Livni [co-leader of the center-left Zionist Union coalition] and [Labor Party Chairman Isaac] Herzog formed the next government, Hamastan would be established here,” Netanyahu said.

Israel is slated to hold fresh Knesset elections on Tuesday. Elections are held every four years, but the assembly can dissolve itself before the expiration of its term through a simple majority vote.

Competition between Netanyahu’s right-wing Likud party and the Zionist Union alliance is expected to be fierce, according to recent opinion polls.

International law considers the West Bank and East Jerusalem occupied territories captured by Israel in 1967, deeming any construction of Jewish settlements on the land to be illegal.

Since its establishment 66 years ago, Israel has continued to misappropriate Palestinian land in the West Bank – on which it continues to build Jewish-only settlements – in breach of international law.

Palestinians, for their part, demand the establishment of an independent Palestinian state in the Gaza Strip and West Bank, with East Jerusalem.

Source: World Bulletin.

Link: http://www.worldbulletin.net/todays-news/156660/israeli-pm-vows-more-jewish-settlements-if-re-elected.

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