Palestinians condemn east Jerusalem housing plan

AP News
Posted: Oct 14, 2011 10:29 AM
Palestinians condemn east Jerusalem housing plan

Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat is condemning a plan to build more than 2,000 housing units in an east Jerusalem neighborhood.

The plan allots 2,610 units for Givat Hamatos, a Jewish neighborhood between Jerusalem and Bethlehem, about two miles (five kilometers) apart.

Erekat said Friday the plan "makes a mockery of ... efforts to bring about a just and lasting peace."

Palestinians want the West Bank and east Jerusalem as parts of their future state. They say they won't resume peace talks until construction there is halted.

Israel says such issues should be discussed in negotiations.

Jerusalem City Councilman Meir Margalit doubted the plan will pass when it comes up for approval in 60 days. "There is no sign that a new neighborhood will be built there," he said.