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Netanyahu vows not to 'uproot' Israeli settlements from West Bank

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gives a speech during a ceremony at a military base near the Israeli settlement of Gush Etzion in the occupied West Bank on September 27, 2017. (Photo by AFP)

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says the Tel Aviv regime will never evacuate Israeli settlements built in the occupied West Bank.

"There will be no more uprooting of settlements in the land of Israel,” Netanyahu said on Wednesday while addressing a ceremony marking 50 years since Israel built first settlements in the West Bank and Syria's Golan Heights.

Netanyahu’s remarks sparked anger from Palestinians, with presidential spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeina stressing that the Israeli prime minister’s remarks were unacceptable.

Abu Rudeina went on to call on the international community to pressure Israel into halting its settlement activities.

On Tuesday, the UN said Israel’s settlement activities are making the so-called two-state solution increasingly unattainable.

A UN Security Council resolution passed last year condemned all Israeli settlement construction on the occupied Palestinian territories. The landmark Resolution 2334, passed on December 23, 2016, called the Israeli settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem al-Quds a “flagrant violation of international law.” The resolution also called on Israel to stop all such construction.

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About 600,000 Israelis live in over 230 illegal settlements built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East Jerusalem al-Quds.

Palestinians want the West Bank as part of a future independent state, with East Jerusalem al-Quds as its capital.

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