30 Jun 2009

More housing approved by Israel on West Bank

6:23 am on 30 June 2009

Israel has approved the construction of 50 new housing units in a Jewish settlement in the occupied West Bank.

Officials say the homes will house settlers being moved from a nearby unauthorised outpost and are only the first part of an expansion plan.

The move runs against a demand by the United States, that Israel stop all settlement activity on occupied Palestinian land.

The Palestinian Authority says settlements, which are illegal under international law, are one of the biggest barriers to peace. It has vowed to stay away from negotiations until building work is frozen.