Statement by the Press Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, on the decision by Israel to accelerate the construction of the settlements

November 4, 2011

  1. The Government of Japan deplores the decision, on November 1, by the Government of Israel on the acceleration of the construction of the settlements in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, in response to the approval of the Palestinian accession to UNESCO.

  2. Settlement activities are a violation of international law, and Japan reiterates its strong call to Israel to freeze the settlement activities in the West Bank including East Jerusalem, and to withdraw the decision on the acceleration of the construction plans in the settlements.

  3. In addition, Japan is deeply concerned at the news that Israel has temporarily frozen the transmission of the taxes which Israel collects on behalf of the Palestinian Authority.

  4. Japan is concerned that such measures exacerbate the tension between the parties, while the international community including the Quartet has made its utmost efforts for the resumption of the negotiations between the Israeli and Palestinian sides. Japan strongly urges both parties to respond to the efforts of the international community and to tenaciously continue the efforts for peace.
    • (*The foregoing is a provisional translation. The date indicated above denotes the date of the issue of the original press release in Japanese.)