U.S. 'Deeply Concerned' About Plans to Advance Construction for Jewish Settlers in Hebron

Deputy State Department spokesperson Mark Toner says the U.S. opposes any expansion of settlement activity and considers this step to erode peace efforts.

Michal Fattal

The United States on Tuesday expressed "deep concern" about the Israeli government's intention to advance construction for Jewish settlers in the West Bank city of Hebron, as reported by Haaretz.

Deputy State Department spokesperson Mark Toner said that the U.S. government opposes any expansion of settlement activity and considers this step to erode peace efforts.

"Certainly if these reports are true, it would appear to be an effort to expand civilian Israeli settlement in the city of Hebron, and that would represent a deeply concerning step of settlement expansions – settlement expansion, rather, on land that is at least partially owned by the Palestinians," Toner said.

"We strongly oppose all settlement activity, which is corrosive to the cause of peace. And we’ve said repeatedly such moves are not consistent with Israel’s stated desire to achieve a two-state solution."

Earlier this year the Defense Ministry issued a planning permit for several housing units for Jews in city’s H2 area, which is under full Israeli control. The units are to be built on land that belongs to the military’s Mitkanim outpost. A special team has been planning the settlement’s expansion in recent months.