“Israel’s illegal actions on the lands it has invaded are unacceptable,” a Turkish Foreign Ministry statement said in response to the Ministry of Housing and Construction’s publishing of tenders for 336 settlement units last week.
“This decision will deepen the suspicions of Israel’s sincerity in pushing the peace process forward,” the statement added, according to the newspaper. “We stress that we don’t recognize the illegal steps Israel is taking, challenging international law.”
The statement represents a further blow to the already strained relationship between the two countries, which has come under close scrutiny in the run up to the publication of the UN report into the IDF raid on the Turkish Mavi Marmara ship last year.
According to the Ministry of Housing and Construction, 294 new homes will be built in the Beitar Illit settlement just outside of Jerusalem and 42 in the Karnei Shomron settlement outside of Kfar Sava.