Maale Adumim
Maale Adumim Flash 90

Egypt has joined the flurry of condemnations of Israel over its plans to build new housing units in Maale Adumim and in Jerusalem.

The plans were announced Sunday following last week's terrorist attacks against Israelis in Judea and Samaria.

In a statement quoted by the Palestinian Arab Ma'an news agency, the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned what it termed Israel’s “continuous building of settlements in occupied Palestinian territory”.

The statement charged that the construction contradicts international law and harms the peace process.

The Egyptian government urged the Israeli government to “cancel the decision and put an end to the policy of escalation, which kills the hopes of Palestinians”, according to Ma'an.

The plans announced by Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman include 560 housing units in Maale Adumim, as well as the advancement of plans to build 240 housing units in Jerusalem.

Egypt is, of course, not alone, as all announcements of Israeli construction in Judea, Samaria or Jerusalem are usually condemned.

On Monday, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon criticized Israel over the construction, saying it “raises legitimate questions about Israel’s long-term intentions, which are compounded by continuing statements of some Israeli ministers calling for the annexation of the West Bank.”

The State Department in Washington used particularly harsh language in condemning the Israeli construction, with spokesman John Kirby saying the move “would be the latest step in what seems to be a systematic process of land seizures, settlement expansions, and legalizations of outposts that is fundamentally undermining the prospects for a two-state solution.”

Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Executive Committee Member Hanan Ashrawi also blasted the construction, saying the move was a “blatant disregard for international laws and conventions, standing UN resolutions and global consensus”, according to Ma'an.

“By isolating Jerusalem from its Palestinian environs and ethnically cleansing the occupied city of its indigenous population, the Israeli government is bent on destroying the viability, integrity and territorial contiguity of a future Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital,” Ashrawi charged.

(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)