The Secretary-General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Professor Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, has condemned strongly the Israeli government's decision to accelerate the construction of hundreds of illegal settlement units in the occupied West Bank. He called the decision "proof of Israeli arrogance", knowing the inability of the international community to act decisively on the right of the Palestinians to establish an independent state recognised by the United Nations. Israel announced an increase in settlement building after UNESCO agreed to accept Palestine as a member on Monday.
In a press statement, Prof. Ihsanoglu said, "The settlement decision revealed Israel's lack of seriousness about a real peace process based on the principle of two states." Warning of the negative consequences of Israel's defiance in the face of international opinion, he drew attention to the fact that the ongoing Israeli repudiation of the peace process will lead the region towards dangerous developments with undesirable consequences.
Nevertheless, the OIC chief stressed the determination of the Organisation to continue with its support for Palestinian efforts to obtain full membership of the UN for the State of Palestine, with Jerusalem as its capital.