New Peace Now Report: Settlement Construction Surge in First Half of 2013

Today the Israeli Peace Now movement issued a report documenting a surge in settlement construction during the first half of 2013. The report contradicts the popular narrative that settlement construction in the West Bank slowed during the run-up to the re-start of Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.

In reality, the period of January-June 2013 saw a huge increase in construction compared to the same period in 2012. The details of the report are summarized below. The full report is available here.

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Press Release: APN Welcomes Obama's UN Speech

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Americans for Peace Now (APN) welcomes President Barack Obama's commitment to continue pursuing Arab-Israeli peace and to continue focusing on peacefully preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

In particular, APN endorses President Obama's focus at the United Nation's General Assembly on engagement with Iran. APN also joins the President's call on friends of Israel in the US and worldwide to "recognize that Israel's security as a Jewish and democratic state depends on the realization of a Palestinian state." 

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APN Condemns Killing of Israeli Soldiers; Settlements not the Answer

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Americans for Peace Now (APN) joins its Israeli sister organization, Israel's Peace Now movement, in strongly condemning the killing of two Israeli soldiers in the West Bank over the Sukkot holiday weekend.

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The Ongoing Calamity in Syria

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APN is deeply concerned over the spiraling calamity in Syria. More than two years of fighting has left the country in ruins and more than 100,000 people dead, including, in the latest phase, hundreds killed in a chemical weapons attack.

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APN Condemns New Settlement Tenders, Calls for Strong U.S. Response

more-settlements186x140.jpgAmericans for Peace Now (APN) today harshly condemned the government of Israel's recent actions to move forward with new settlement approvals and tenders in both East Jerusalem and the West Bank. APN urged President Obama and Secretary of State Kerry to engage vigorously to convince Netanyahu to roll back these reckless, destructive decisions.

APN President and CEO Debra DeLee commented:

"Yesterday's announcement of tenders for 1200 new units in settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem was an extraordinary sign of contempt for President Abbas and for new U.S. special Middle East peace envoy Martin Indyk, who arrived in Israel this week to restart talks. It came on the heels of last week's outrageous news of a decision to press ahead with almost 900 new settlement units. Today's announcement of the approval of nearly 1000 additional settlement units in East Jerusalem appears to reflect nothing short of deliberate effort to extinguish any hopes of success for the Kerry-backed peace effort before the second round of talks even starts.

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wall-settlements186x140.jpgAccording to an Israeli radio report earlier today, Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently ordered Minister of Housing Uri Ariel not to issue new tenders for construction in settlements.

On the heels of this report, Israel's Peace Now movement today confirmed that, since President Obama's visit to Israel in March, the government of Israel has not announced or approved any new West Bank settlement construction plans, and has not approved any new tenders for settlement construction. 

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Press Release: APN to Netanyahu: Repudiate Levy Commission Report

Levy_Netanyahu_Collage2.jpgWashington, DC - Americans for Peace Now (APN) today joined its Israeli sister organization, Peace Now (Shalom Achshav) in calling on the government of Israel to repudiate the findings of the commission it appointed to address the problem of illegal outposts in the West Bank. APN calls on other US Jewish groups that support the two-state solution to raise their voices in opposition to this report.

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