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U.N. rights office says Israeli settlements remain unlawful

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By Reuters

GENEVA (Reuters) – The U.N. human rights office reaffirmed its long-standing position on Tuesday that Israeli settlements in occupied Palestinian territory are in breach of international law, thereby rejecting the Trump administration’s revised position.

The United States on Monday effectively backed Israel’s right to build Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank by abandoning its four-decade-old position that they were “inconsistent with international law”.

“A change in the policy position of one state does not modify existing international law nor its interpretation by the International Court of Justice and the (U.N.) Security Council,” U.N. human rights spokesman Rupert Colville told a Geneva news briefing.

(Reporting by Stephanie Nebehay; Editing by Alison Williams)