Wed, 03 Mar 2021

UNITED NATIONS, Jan. 18 (Xinhua) -- UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Monday expressed his deep concern over Israel's decision to advance plans for some 800 settlement units, most of which are located deep inside the occupied West Bank.

Guterres reiterated that Israel's establishment of settlements in the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, has no legal validity and constitutes a flagrant violation of international law, said Guterres' spokesperson Stephane Dujarric in a statement.

Settlement expansion increases the risk of confrontation, further undermines the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination, and further erodes the possibility of ending the occupation and establishing a contiguous and viable sovereign Palestinian state, based on the pre-1967 lines, said the statement.

The secretary-general urged the government of Israel to halt and reverse such decisions, which are a major obstacle to the achievement of the two-state solution, and a just, lasting and comprehensive peace, it added.

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