Israel has failed to comply with UN Security Council Resolution 2334 which calls for a halt to settlement building and has instead accelerated such activity, UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Nickolay Mladenov reported on Tuesday.
“Since the 24th of March there has been a substantial increase in settlement-related announcements as compared with the previous reporting period, with plans for nearly 4,000 housing units moving forward and 2,000 tenders issued,” Mladenov told the UNSC in New York while delivering his second quarterly report on the resolution, which was approved in December.
“The policy of continued illegal settlement construction in the occupied Palestinian territory contravenes Resolution 2334,” he charged.
“The large number of settlement-related activities documented during this period undermine the chances for the establishment of a viable, contiguous Palestinian state as part of a two-state solution,” Mladenov added.
Israel turned a blind eye to Mladenov’s report. In the morning Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu posted a photograph on Twitter of cranes starting to build homes in the newly founded settlement of Amihai in the Binyamin region of the West Bank.
“Today work has begun in the field, just as I promised, to create a new settlement for the Amona residents,” the premier wrote.
“After 20 years, I have the privilege to be the prime minster who builds a new settlement in Judea and Samaria,” Netanyahu said of Amihai, the first settlement to be created by a cabinet vote in over 20 years.
It is the first time Netanyahu has so openly boasted of settlement construction with a photograph on Twitter or any other social media platform.
It’s the latest in a string of public statements he has made in support of extensive settlement building that signal a new attitude on the topic by his government.