Settlers throw stones at U.S. consulate convoy in West Bank after destroying 5000 Olive Trees

olive

Settlers from the Adei Ad illegal outpost in the West Bank threw stones on Friday at an American consulate convoy, which arrived at the area to examine complaints that settlers destroyed Palestinian-owned olive groves the day before.

One of the landowners in the village is an American citizen, Israel Radio reported.

The bulletproof American vehicles only sustained light damage, and no one was hurt.

The American diplomats from the U.S. consulate in Jerusalem arrived at the area after receiving complaints from Palestinians from the village of Turmusayya that settlers uprooted 5,000 olive saplings on Thursday. The saplings were planted in a plot which was only recently cultivated after years of legal battles.

Read full article at Haaretz.

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Netanyahu says US criticism of settlements is ‘against American values’

Israel’s prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, has dismissed a recent White House rebuke of Israeli settlement construction, saying such criticism goes “against American values”.

Israel came under fire last week after a Jerusalem city official signed the final go-ahead for construction of a new housing development in east Jerusalem. A day earlier, an ultranationalist Jewish group said dozens of settlers would move into six apartment buildings purchased in the heart of a predominantly Arab neighbourhood.

In a striking public rebuke, the Obama administration warned Israel that the new project would distance Israel from “even its closest allies” and raise questions about its commitment to seeking peace with Palestinians.

In an interview broadcast on Sunday on CBS, Netanyahu said he did not accept restrictions on where Jews could live, and said that Jerusalem’s Arabs and Jews should be able to buy homes wherever they want.

He said he was “baffled” by the American condemnation.

“It’s against the American values. And it doesn’t bode well for peace,” he said. “The idea that we’d have this ethnic purification as a condition for peace, I think it’s anti-peace.”

Israel says east Jerusalem is part of its capital and considers Jewish housing developments there to be neighbourhoods of the city. But the international community, including the United States, does not recognise Israel’s annexation of the area and considers construction there to be illegitimate settlement activity.

The interview was recorded on Thursday. The White House declined to comment.

Netanyahu says US criticism of settlements is ‘against American values’ – The Guardian