UN Chief Ban Ki-moon called on Israel to put a halt to its settlement activity as a ‘goodwill gesture’ to the Palestinian Authority. Ban is visiting Israel and the Palestinian Territories to meet with both sides and convince them to go on with the low-key talks they started last month. The UN considers all settlement construction by Israel in the West Bank and East Jerusalem as violations of international law. Israel regards the question of the settlements as something that should be part of the final peace talks and Netanyahu said it will not consider it as a precondition.
Agence France-Presse (AFP), France