UN Mideast envoy Tor Wennesland expressed deep concern over Israel’s plan to expand illegal settlements in occupied Palestinian territories.
Wennesland accused Israel of violating international law by expanding settlement construction in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem.
In this regard, he urged the country’s newly elected government to halt its expansion plans immediately.
“I again underscore, in no uncertain terms, that Israeli settlements constitute a flagrant violation of United Nations resolutions and international law,” the UN envoy said.
“They are a major obstacle to the achievement of a two-state solution and a just, lasting and comprehensive peace.”
“The advancement of all settlement activity must cease immediately,” Wennesland said.
Israel has earlier approved a plan to add 540 housing units to the Har Homa settlement in East Jerusalem as well as the establishment of settlement outposts.
The plan includes forcefully displace dozens of Palestinian families from occupied Jerusalem’s Sheikh Jarrah and Silwan neighborhoods.
Angry protests swept over the West Bank and occupied Jerusalem over the past month, where dozens of Palestinians were arrested and injured during the events.
Israel’s settlement expansion is considered illegal under international law and by much of the international community.
Between 600,000 and 750,000 Israeli settlers live in more than 250 illegal settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories.