Monday, March 22, 2010

'US knew about settlements'

By Jeffrey Heller, Reuters, in Jerusalem

"The Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, said yesterday that he had told Washington in writing just before heading for talks with the US President, Barack Obama, that he would not stop Jewish settlement around Jerusalem.

The settlement issue, accompanied by mounting violence in the occupied West Bank, is challenging renewed efforts by the American special envoy to the Middle East, George Mitchell, to get peace talks under way.

"Our policy on Jerusalem is the same policy followed by all Israeli governments for the 42 years, and it has not changed. As far as we are concerned, building in Jerusalem is the same as building in Tel Aviv," Mr Netanyahu told his cabinet yesterday....."

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