• Palestinian leaders have decided to move UN Security Council and Arab League to convene urgent sessions to halt the construction of Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem.

  • The Palestine Liberation Organization issued a statement to this effect in Ramallah. It said the continued settlement growth in the occupied West Bank and east Jerusalem can destroy the peace process and the two-state solution.

  • Israeli construction of settlements in east Jerusalem and the West Bank has been one of the thorny issues in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. The move scuttled the direct negotiations between the two sides that began in September 2010.

  • Efforts by the international peacemaking Quartet to bring the parties back to the table has not made any headway even when it has set a deadline of 26th January for itself.