Mideast mediators condemn Israeli housing plans
An international group of mediators in the Middle East have condemned Israel for planning to build 1,600 housing units in occupied East Jerusalem.
The group, which consists of the European Union, Russia, the United Nations and United States known as the Quartet, issued a statement Friday warning that the plans could have a negative effect on Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, dpa reported.
"The Quartet condemns Israels decision to advance planning for new housing units in East Jerusalem," the statement said.
The representatives from the Quartet are scheduled to meet in Moscow March 19.
Israel announced the plans on Tuesday, angering the Palestinians, who view settlement activity as a major obstacle to rejoining negotiations.
The plans came just a day after the Israelis and Palestinians agreed to hold indirect talks brokered by the United States. The Palestinians immediately threatened to pull out of the discussions that have yet to begin.