Nickolay Mladenov
Nickolay MladenovFlash 90

The UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Nickolay Mladenov on Thursday condemned Israel's announcement of plans to build new housing units in Judea and Samaria.

"The new settlement activity will undermine the achievement of the two-state solution that would put an end to the ongoing conflict between the Palestinians and Israelis," Mladenov said in a statement quoted by the Xinhua news agency.

"The construction of the settlements is illegal under international law, as well as it is one of the main obstacles to achieve peace in the region," he added.

He called on the Israeli government to stop its plans of building new “settlements”.

Mladenov’s comments come a day after the Civil Administration’s Higher Planning Committee approved 2,166 new housing units in Judea and Samaria.

This is the first time since February that the Higher Planning Committee approved new housing units in Judea and Samaria.

While the committee was scheduled to meet in May, the meeting was repeatedly delayed, then cancelled, with no explanation given.

The construction approval was criticized by Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ spokesman, Nabil Abu Rudeineh.

Abu Rudeineh called on the international community to pressure Israel to stop its “settlement” activity in the “Palestinian territories”, and warned that the area "will not be enjoying stability without stopping the Israeli violations against the Palestinians."