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U.S. Concerned Over Israeli Settlement Plan

U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki

U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki

The United States says it has "serious concerns" about Israel's decision to allow settlers to continue building on Palestinian land despite the start of a new round of peace talks.

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said in Washington on August 12 that the White House did not accept "the legitimacy of continued settlement activity."

The statement comes after Israel’s government on August 11 approved the construction of more than 1,000 new homes for Jewish settlers in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

Israeli-Palestinian peace talks are due to resume on August 14 in Jerusalem under a U.S.-led initiative.

These discussions are supposed to reach an agreement within nine months, but Washington fears more settlement-building by Israel could derail the process.

Talks broke down in 2010 over the issue of Jewish settlement construction on occupied Palestinian land.

Based on reporting by AP and AFP