Ned Price
Ned PriceREUTERS/Kevin Lamarque/POOL/File Photo

State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters on Friday the US is "concerned" about the announcement in Israel that 3,000 Jewish housing units in Judea and Samaria would be approved next week.

"We are concerned about the announcement of a meeting next week to advance settlement units deep in the West Bank," Price said in response to a question from Walla reporter Barak Ravid, adding that the US "[believes] it is critical for Israel and the Palestinian Authority to refrain from unilateral steps that exacerbate tension and undercut efforts to advance a negotiated two-state solution."

"This certainly includes settlement activity, as well as retroactive legalization of settlement outposts."

The Supreme Planning Council of the Civil Administration will convene this coming Wednesday for the first time since the current government's term began and since the beginning of the Biden Administration and will approve 3,144 housing units in Judea and Samaria.

Among the approvals is the outline plan of Mitzpe Dani in the area of ​​the settlement of Ma'ale Mikhmas in the Benjamin region. At the same time, the construction of more than a thousand housing units for Palestinian Arabs in Area C will be approved.

According to the published agenda, the homes will be built in the communities of Revava, Kedumim, Elon Moreh, Har Bracha, Karnei Shomron and communities in Gush Etzion and the Hebron Hills.

The construction that will be approved for the Palestinian Arabs on Sunday in about a week and a half in Area C will include about 1,133 housing units. At the political level, it was decided not to include Khirbet Beit Zakariyyah in the permits following a protest by settlement leaders who claimed that building permits at this location, between Alon Shvut and Rosh Tzurim, would harm the Israeli territorial contiguity.