Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE INTERVIEW

Ex-CIA director 'very worried' at prospect of Trump presidency

Read more

FACE-OFF

Migrant crisis: A political football in France?

Read more

FOCUS

Will France repatriate its collection of 19th century Algerian skulls?

Read more

ENCORE!

Film show: 'The Dancer', 'Aquarius' and 'Dogs'

Read more

MIDDLE EAST MATTERS

War in Syria: Residents recount ordeal of life in Aleppo

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Shimon Peres’ Quixotic battle for Israeli-Palestinian peace

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Sarkozy's friends, ongoing cases, bothers

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Can oil producers agree to cut supply?

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Women terrorists are 'probably the future', says ex-CIA agent

Read more

Middle east

Israel rejects US calls for settlement freeze

Video by Marc DE CHALVRON , Guillaume AUDA

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2009-06-01

An Israeli minister close to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday that Israel would not heed US President Barack Obama's call to freeze all settlement activity in the occupied West Bank as a step toward renewed peace talks.

There is a growing disagreement between Barack Obama and Netanyahu’s government in Israel over continued settler activity.

 

Israel refuses to stop building new homes in the West Bank as required by Washington, referring to a legal agreement to deal with the "natural growth" of the population. Israel also accuses President Obama of ignoring the commitments made by his predecessor, George W. Bush.

 

But for President Obama, the argument for “natural growth” is no longer applicable. The US president has demanded a freeze on all settlement activity.

 

FRANCE 24 reports on construction activity that is visibly growing in Giv'at Ze'ev, a settlement just north of Jerusalem. In the town centre, the local population wants the community to be allowed to expand. "Why is the natural growth of Jews less important than the natural growth of Arabs?" asks Yaacov Barut, a resident.

 

But Jeff Halper, a longtime peace activist, disagrees. He is watching the construction of a brand new neighbourhood with 800 apartments. Halper thinks the idea of natural growth isn’t necessarily valid, saying that the people who come to live in the new apartments are not “all children of Giv'at Ze’ev”.

Date created : 2009-06-01

COMMENT(S)