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Israel settlements: UN steps up pressure

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The UN is stepping up pressure on Israel over its settlement building on occupied Palestinian land in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. The secretary general and all Security Council members except the US demanded an immediate halt to new construction. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said his government would press ahead with settlement expansion. The US protects Israel at the UN but the state department accused Israel of "a pattern of provocative action." Spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said settlement activity put the goal of peace "further at risk."

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At www.bbc.co.uk

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