Last Updated: Wed Feb 16, 2011 08:23 am (KSA) 05:23 am (GMT)

UN eyes vote on resolution against Israeli settlements

A general view of the Israeli settlement of Ramot (File)
A general view of the Israeli settlement of Ramot (File)

The U.N. Security Council is likely to vote this week on a resolution filed by Arab countries condemning Israeli settlements in Palestinian territories, according to a Palestinian diplomat.

The vote is expected Thursday or Friday, the diplomat said.

The United States, which regularly uses its Security Council veto power to stop anti-Israeli initiatives, has pledged to oppose the resolution. It advocates for direct negotiations between Israel and Palestinians.

Representatives of Arab countries last month filed the resolution condemning Israeli settlements and urging the U.N. to halt construction in occupied territories.

France has signaled its support but only if the resolution is "moderate and if it does not block the resumption of (peace) negotiations," Foreign Minister Michele Alliot-Marie said last month.

World powers are seeking ways to get Israel and the Palestinians back to the negotiating table after talks broke down in September when a 10-month freeze on Jewish construction in the West Bank expired.

The Palestinians are refusing to resume negotiations while Israel builds on land they want for their future state, but efforts to convince Israel to impose a new ban failed late last year.

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