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JPost - EU expresses angst over demolitions

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  • Paul
    JPost - The Jerusalem Post EU expresses angst over demolitions By JPOST.COM STAFF 06/30/2010 15:08 East Jerusalem demolitions labeled as an illegal obstacle
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 30, 2010
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      JPost -
      The Jerusalem Post
      EU expresses angst over demolitions
      By JPOST.COM STAFF
      06/30/2010 15:08


      East Jerusalem demolitions labeled as an "illegal obstacle to peace."

      http://www.jpost.com/International/Article.aspx?id=179998


      EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton called the planned demolitions
      in east Jerusalem an "obstacle to peace," reported the AFP Wednesday.

      The demolitions are part of a planned archaeological development, and
      have caused recent controversy, including a 200-strong demonstration in
      Silwan last Sunday, where protesters clashed with police.



      Ashton called the demolitions illegal under international law and said
      they would make a two-state solution impossible. "If there is to be
      genuine peace, a way must be found through negotiations to resolve the
      status of Jerusalem as the future capital of two states."

      The demolitions also drew fire last week from UN Secretary-General Ban
      Ki-Moon, who labeled the plan illegal and unhelpful to the peace process.

      In an official statement, the UN chief said, ”the planned moves are
      contrary to international law, and to the wishes of Palestinian
      residents.” The statement also cautioned against “provocative steps”
      that could “heighten tensions in the city.”

      “The secretary-general is deeply concerned about the decision by the
      Jerusalem Municipality to advance planning for house demolitions and
      further settlement activity in the area of Silwan,” the statement said.
      “The current moves are unhelpful, coming at a time when the goal must be
      to build trust to support political negotiations.”


      The US has come out against the demolitions as well. The US is "worried"
      about Jerusalem's Silwan building project, the US State Department said
      last week according to AFP.

      "This is expressly the kind of step that we think undermines trust that
      is fundamental in making progress to the proximity talks and ultimately
      in direct negotiations," said US State Department spokesman Philip Crowley.

      A spokesman for Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat told The Jerusalem Post on
      Sunday that the projects were designed to improve the quality of life of
      Silwan’s Arab residents and that they would not “surprise” the
      international community.

      Abe Selig contributed to this article.
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