NEW YORK, March 25, 2017 (WAFA) – Instead of halting settlement activities as demanded by United Nations Security Council Resolution 2334 of December 23, 2016, Israel has actually increased such activities, Nickolay Mladenov, the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, told the Security Council on Friday.
Israeli settlement plans and construction in the occupied Palestinian territory increased notably in the last three months despite a call from the Security Council in late December 2016 to cease such activity, Mladenov told the 15-member Council on implementation of resolution 2334.
He said that even though the resolution called on Israel to take steps to cease all settlement activity in the occupied Palestinian territory, “no such steps have been taken during the reporting period.”
Instead, he added, there had been a marked increase in statements, announcements and decisions related to construction and expansion, stressing that all settlement activities were illegal under international law.
Israel announced the construction of 6,000 new housing units in illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank during the first two months of this year. Within three weeks, some 3,000 housing units had advanced through the planning process and more than 240 units had reached the final approval stage.
Resolution 2334 demands that the UN Secretary General presents the Security Council with a progress report every three months on Israeli settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territories.
Speaking at the same session, Uruguay’s representative said three months after the adoption of resolution 2334, the Security Council had not received the Secretary-General’s progress report on the text’s implementation.
The representative of Bolivia said that the occupation of Palestinian territories had no legal validity and was a flagrant violation of human rights, obstructing the two-State solution. Israel’s extremist rhetoric, including the announcement of 6,000 new settlements in the West Bank, was not helping, he said.