An Israeli bulldozer sits at a construction site in East al-Quds (Jerusalem). (file photo)
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says he doesn’t care about what the United Nations says about Tel Aviv’s plan to build more settler units, pledging to escalate the construction activities.
Netanyahu made the remarks in an interview broadcasted in part on Israeli Channel 2 on Friday. The complete interview is scheduled to be aired on Saturday.
Netanyahu described al-Quds (Jerusalem) as Israel’s capital and said it was not an occupied territory.
"I don't care what the United Nations says," Netanyahu declared.
On December 3, Israel announced that it plans to construct 1,600 new illegal settlement units in East al-Quds, which was annexed by Tel Aviv following the Six-Day War of 1967, in violation of international law.
Israeli Interior Ministry spokeswoman Efrat Orbach said that the 1,600 units first announced in March 2010 would be built in the East al-Quds neighborhood of Ramat Shlomo.
On November 30, Israel approved a plan to build 3,000 more units in East al-Quds and the occupied West Bank.
Many countries, including some of Tel Aviv’s allies, have condemned the Israeli plans to construct illegal settler units in the occupied Palestinian territories.
Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt said on December 3 that the Israeli plan is “pure vengeance against the Palestinians following the UN vote.”
On November 29, the 193-member UN General Assembly voted 138-9 with 41 abstentions to upgrade Palestine’s status to non-member observer state.
The observer state status grants Palestinians access to UN agencies and the International Criminal Court, where they can file formal complaints against the Israeli regime.
Israel’s annexation of East al-Quds (Jerusalem) is in violation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 242 and has never been recognized by the international community.