More eastern Jerusalem building approved
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More eastern Jerusalem building approved

JERUSALEM (JTA) — A planning and building committee approved new plans to build a Jewish neighborhood in eastern Jerusalem.

The Jerusalem municipal committee approved three five-story buildings on Wednesday as part of a plan to build in the Shuafat neighborhood. American businessman Irving Moskowitz will fund the buildings.

On Monday, the committee approved the construction of four apartment buildings on the Mount of Olives in eastern Jerusalem. The buildings, which will house 24 Jewish families, will be located next to the long-established Beit Orot yeshiva.  Moskowitz initiated the project, according to reports.

The approval comes as the Palestinians continue to refuse a return to peace negotiations until Israel halts all settlement construction, including in Jerusalem. The Palestinians say that eastern Jerusalem will be the capital of a future Palestinian state.

The 10-month freeze on new West Bank settlement construction announced by the Netanyahu administration in November does not include Jerusalem.