Israel to build 285 new settlements in occupied Palestinian West Bank

This picture taken on July 29, 2016 shows a general view of Israeli construction cranes and excavators at the building site of new units in the illegal settlement of Gilo in occupied East Jerusalem al-Quds. ©AFP
This picture taken on July 29, 2016 shows a general view of Israeli construction cranes and excavators at the building site of new units in the illegal settlement of Gilo in occupied East Jerusalem al-Quds. ©AFP

Israel has approved the construction of 285 new homes at Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank, according to the settlement watchdog Peace Now.

A 234-unit nursing home in Elkana, 30 houses in Beit Arye and 20 in Givat Zeev got the go-ahead on Tuesday.

Retrospective permits were also issued for 179 existing homes in Ofarim.

The US said it was “deeply concerned” and warned that settlement expansion posed a “very serious and growing threat” to peace with the Palestinians.

About 570,000 Israelis live in more than 100 settlements built since Israel’s 1967 occupation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem. The settlements are considered illegal under international law, though Israel disputes this.

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