Statement by the Press Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, on the decision regarding the construction of housing units in the West Bank

February 23, 2012

  1. The Government of Japan deeply deplores that, according to the information, the Israeli government has announced the approval of plans for the construction of a total of 695 new housing units for Jewish people in Shilo and Shvut Rachel in the West Bank.
  2. The Israeli government continues to proceed with its plan for settlement construction at a time when the Middle East Quartet and the international community are making utmost efforts to resume direct negotiations between Israeli and Palestinian sides. This clearly goes against the ongoing efforts by the international community to resume negotiations for peace.
  3. Settlement activities are a violation of international law, and Japan has repeatedly called upon Israel to fully freeze settlement activities. The Government of Japan does not recognize any unilateral act that prejudges the final status of the territories in the pre-1967 borders. Japan strongly calls upon Israel not to implement the above-mentioned plans of construction for the sake of progress in the peace process.
  4. Japan once again strongly urges that both sides act to enhance mutual trust and continue to make steady efforts for peace.

* The foregoing is a provisional translation. The date indicated above denotes the date of issue of the original press release in Japanese.