Israeli plan to build a new Jerusalem gate condemned by Palestinian government

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The Palestinian Authority has denounced a potentially explosive Israeli plan to build a gate in the Ottoman walls of Jerusalem's storied Old City as a provocative move that could undermine peace talks.

Jewish municipal officials last week unveiled a proposal to breach the Old City's walls for the first time in 112 years, a project that threatens to jeopardise the delicate status quo in one of the world's most sensitive and disputed religious sites.

The row comes when the negotiations, launched in Washington last month, are already in deep crisis following the expiry of an Israeli moratorium on Jewish settlement construction in the occupied West Bank.

Having already threatened to abandon the talks, Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian leader, raised the stakes further over the weekend by calling on the United States to support the creation of an independent Palestinian state in the West Bank....

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