Last week, an Israeli planning commission approved 930 new housing units in the Har Homa neighborhood in east Jerusalem. Actual building is at least two years off.
(AP) -- The Obama administration says it is "deeply concerned" by Israeli approval of new housing construction in disputed east Jerusalem.
The State Department says such "unilateral actions work against efforts to resume direct negotiations" and the spirit of the peace process. In a statement, the department says it has raised its objections with the Israeli government.
Alongside its rare rebuke of a close ally, the State Department said Israelis and Palestinians should settle their differences on Jerusalem through negotiation.
Statement by Businessman Bob Turner, Candidate for Congress (NY-9)on President Obama's Criticism of Israel:
"There goes President Obama again today, on the saddest day of the Hebrew Calendar, finding -- as he always does -- something or some way to beat up on Israel. This administration and the Democratic party never fail to find a way to slam our closest ally in the Middle East."
"Today is Tisha B'Av when Jews around the world commemorate the destruction of both the first and second Temples in Jerusalem. And today the Obama administration criticized Israel for housing construction in East Jerusalem that will not take place for at least another two years."