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Friday, 21 February 2020

Jordan praises 'historic' UN Israel settlement vote

AFP , Saturday 24 Dec 2016
UN Israel
The United Nations, Samantha Power, center, the United States Ambassador to the United Nations, votes to abstain during a U.N. Security Council vote on condemning Israel's settlements in the West Bank and east Jerusalem, Friday, Dec. 23, 2016 at United Nations Headquarters. (AP)
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Jordan on Saturday welcomed the "historic" UN Security Council resolution demanding a halt to Israeli settlements, saying the momentous vote paved a way for a two-state solution.

The 15-member council passed the resolution Friday after the United States abstained and despite an effort led by Israel and backed by US President-elect Donald Trump to block the text.

"This historic decision expresses the consensus of the international community on the illegality of Israeli settlements and reaffirms the Palestinian people's historic right (to live) in Jerusalem and its historic lands," Jordan's information minister Mohammad al-Momani said Saturday.

Some 430,000 Israeli settlers currently live in the West Bank and a further 200,000 Israelis live in east Jerusalem, which Palestinians see as the capital of their future state.

The resolution demands that "Israel immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem."

It states that Israeli settlements have "no legal validity" and are "dangerously imperilling the viability of the two-state solution."

Momani said the resolution reinforced the historic position of Jordan -- one of the few Arab states to have diplomatic ties with Israel -- on the need for a two state solution.

The Middle East peace process has been comatose since a US initiative to re-launch peace talks collapsed in April 2014.

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