UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon has reiterated his call for Israel to
rescind its settlement plans in the strategic E1
area of the West Bank.
UN deputy spokesman Eduardo del Buey said the UN chief is following "with concern" Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's
pledge Sunday to move ahead with construction of a new settlement in the E1 area.
The new settlement would deepen east Jerusalem's separation from the West Bank, areas won by Israel in war that the Palestinians want for their state.
Ban noted that Israeli settlements in the West Bank are illegal under international law, del Buey said Monday.
Ban further said Palestinian demonstrations, which Israel broke up on Sunday, were largely nonviolent, and he stressed the right to peaceful protest should be fully respected, del Buey said.
Palestinian protesters set up an outpost
in the E1 area, near Maale Adumim, last Friday. Israel ordered its security forces to evict the activists before dawn on Sunday, after deeming the encampment a security risk because it could provoke unrest among settlers.