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Abbas to Wait Before Reacting on Settlement Building

Jewish Settlers Start West Bank Construction, Freeze Ends
Israeli settlers gather near a tractor at the construction site for 50 housing units in the West Bank settlement of Ariel. Photographer: Jack Guez/AFP/Getty Images

Sept. 27 (Bloomberg) -- Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said he will confer with Arab leaders next week before reacting to Israel’s resumption of building at Jewish settlements in the West Bank.

“We would have liked to see a moratorium that lasts another three or four months, but we won’t have a rapid reaction,” Abbas told reporters in Paris after meeting with French President Nicolas Sarkozy. “We will study all the consequences with the Palestinian leadership and Arab leadership.”

Abbas said he will meet with the Arab League on Oct. 4 and afterward “we can clear up our position.”

Jewish settlers began building in several West Bank settlements today, hours after a 10-month partial moratorium on construction expired. Abbas had said earlier that he can’t continue peace negotiations with Israel if settlement construction continues.

To contact the reporter on this story: Gregory Viscusi in Paris at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: James Hertling at

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