Official: U.S. Didn’t Request Building Freeze

YERUSHALAYIM -

A day after it was reported that the U.S. had asked Israel to freeze building in Yehudah and Shomron during envoy Jason Greenblatt’s visit last week, a senior Israeli official was quoted by local media as denying the story.

“Any purported U.S. demands of Israel in talks regarding the settlements during Mr. Greenblatt’s visit, are false,” he said.

The official rejected the allegation that Greenblatt proposed Israel could build in Jewish areas in east Yerushalayim and a limited number of units in the major blocs in Yehudah and Shomron, but not outside them.In addition,nothing was discussed about an annual quota within the blocs.

On Wednesday, as he departed Beijing, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu spoke of “significant progress” in talks with the Trump administration, and it was expected he would be fully updated on Thursday by his chief of staff Yigal Horowitz, who was in Washington to carry on the negotiations.