Palestinian PM urges EU to sanction Israel for settlements
Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh on Wednesday called on the European Union (EU) to take action against Israel in response to its expansion of illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank.
In a meeting with the President of the European Council, Charles Michel at the Council headquarters in Brussels, Shtayyeh urged the EU to hold European settlers who live in settlements accountable in accordance with the principles of the bloc, which consider settlements illegal.
Shtayyeh hailed the EU position on labelling settlement products, adding that they must be stopped from entering the European market altogether, according to Palestinian Authority's news agency Wafa.
He renewed his call to the EU countries to immediately recognise the State of Palestine to protect the two-state solution, adding that its prospects are dwindling with the increase in settlements.
Israel advanced plans to build more than 3,000 settler homes in the occupied West Bank on Wednesday, a military spokesman said, a day after the US strongly criticised such construction.
The Civil Administration's high planning committee gave the final green light to 1,800 homes and initial approval for another 1,344.
Israeli settlement expansion in the West Bank and East Jerusalem has been a policy of every Israeli government since 1967, when it illegally occupied these areas in the Six-Day War. It later annexed East Jerusalem.
Israel's housing ministry had separately on Sunday published tenders to build 1,355 new homes in the West Bank.
The Civil Administration is meanwhile scheduled on Sunday to advance plans for the construction of 1,301 homes for Palestinians in Israeli-controlled parts of the West Bank.