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Moscow says plans to build 20 apartments in Sheikh Jarrah should be 'stopped immediately' in line with Roadmap peace plan, while France summons Israeli ambassador to demand halt to 'settlement construction' in eastern part of capital; Deputy FM Ayalon in response: Our right to develop Jerusalem irrefutable
Russia, France and the European Union on Tuesday called on Israel halt all construction in east Jerusalem, saying it obstructed the Mideast peace process.
"The settlement should be stopped immediately in line with the Roadmap," Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Andrei Nesterenko said Tuesday, referring to an international peace plan endorsed by the Israelis and Palestinians in 2003.
The project to build 20 apartments is on a site in the neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, which formerly housed the Shepherd Hotel, and in 1985 was bought by American millionaire Irving Moskowitz. It received a building permit from city hall three months ago.
The plan has also been criticized by the US, and Israel's ambassador in Washington, Michael Oren, was summoned to the State Department earlier this month when he was told the project should be halted.
France also summoned the Israeli ambassador in Paris to demand a halt to the Jewish "settlement building" in east Jerusalem, Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner said Tuesday.
Sweden, the current holder of the European Union's rotating presidency, urged Israel "to refrain from provocative actions in east Jerusalem, including home demolitions and evictions, as stated also by the Quartet 26 June 2009.
"Such actions are illegal under international law," it added.
Read more at YNet.