PLO warns of settlement expansion ahead of upcoming Israeli elections

Ramallah, Oct 2 (IANS): Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) has warned that the Israeli settlement construction took "centre stage" in the electoral campaigns of the right-wing and extreme-right parties in Israel.

In a special report, the PLO's National Bureau for Defending Land and Resisting Settlements said the Palestinians view the approval of new settlement plans or the legalisation of existing outposts as new settlements "as an attempt to win the votes of settlers through the absolute exploitation of the stakeholders", Xinhua news agency reported.

"The right-wing and extreme-right parties in Israel are trying to win more votes at the expense of deepening of settlements in the Palestinian territories, including East Jerusalem," the PLO report said.

In the June 1967 Middle East war, Israel occupied the West Bank, the Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem, all claimed by the Palestinians, and has controlled the areas ever since.

More than 700,000 Israeli settlers live in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, according to official Palestinian figures.

Palestinian leaders and officials have consistently warned that the expansion of settlement and confiscation of Palestinian lands in the West Bank would undermine the two-state solution.



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Title: PLO warns of settlement expansion ahead of upcoming Israeli elections

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