Israel Approves New West Bank Homes

Construction will 'undermine peace talks,' Palestinians warn
By Mary Papenfuss,  Newser User
Posted Mar 10, 2008 4:05 AM CDT
Ulltra-Orthodox Jewish men look at posters with the names of the eight yeshiva students that were killed by a Palestinian gunman last Thursday, at the entrance to the Mercaz Harav Yeshiva in Jerusalem,...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Israel has approved plans to begin or complete 750 new homes in the occupied West Bank, posing yet another hurdle to the success of US-brokered Mideast peace talks, Reuters reports. Palestinian leaders immediately condemned the new construction in the Jewish settlement of Givat Ze'ev near Jerusalem. "This will undermine the talks," warned a chief negotiator.

A US general is to convene meetings this week to determine if Israeli and Palestinian leaders are sticking to the peace "road map," which calls on Israel to stop settlement activity and on the Palestinians to halt attacks. The announcement yesterday by Israeli PM Ehud Olmert came 3 days after eight Yeshiva students were killed by a Palestinnian gunman. That followed days of Israeli missile attacks on the Gaza Strip that killed some 120 Palestinians, about half of them civilians.