July 26, 1997 in Nation/World

Israel Pledges To Stop Construction

Associated Press

Moving quickly to ease Palestinian concerns, the government on Friday pledged to block construction on yet another Jewish housing project in east Jerusalem.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s spokesman said building in the Arab neighborhood will not be permitted, despite a go-ahead from city officials Thursday.

Construction on another Jewish housing project in east Jerusalem in March led to the breakdown of the peace negotiations and Palestinian riots in the West Bank.

“Building now … in an Arab neighborhood may be considered provocative,” said Netanyahu pokesman David Bar-Illan. “The permission may have been given, but the building is not going to take place.”

Earlier, the project drew a sharp response from Palestinians.

“I can’t believe it. If this goes on, it is definitely the destruction of the peace process,” chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat told the Associated Press.

© Copyright 1997 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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