Britain to transfer over 400 million pounds debt to Iran soon: Iranian official

This file photo taken on June 10, 2016 shows Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe (L) posing for a photograph with her daughter Gabriella. She is currently being held in an Iranian prison (AFP / Free Nazanin campaign)
Updated 17 November 2017
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Britain to transfer over 400 million pounds debt to Iran soon: Iranian official

ANKARA: Britain will soon transfer its debt of over 400 million pounds ($527 million) to Iran, the Iranian ambassador wrote on his telegram channel on Friday, but said there was no link between paying the debt and the case of jailed British-Iranian aid worker.
“An outstanding debt owed by the UK to Tehran will be transferred to the Central Bank of Iran in the coming days. The payment ... has nothing to do with Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe’s case,” Hamid Baeedinejad wrote on his Telegram channel.


Israel announces plan to approve 2,500 new settler homes in West Bank

Updated 24 May 2018
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Israel announces plan to approve 2,500 new settler homes in West Bank

JERUSALEM: Israel’s defense minister said on Thursday he plans to seek approval next week for the construction of some 2,500 new homes in Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank.

Avigdor Lieberman, writing on Twitter, said a regional planning board would be asked to designate 1,400 of the housing units for immediate construction.

Settlements are one of the most heated issues in efforts to restart Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, frozen since 2014.

Palestinians want the West Bank for a future state, along with East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip. Most countries consider settlements that Israel has built in territory it captured in the 1967 Middle East war to be illegal.

Israel disputes that its settlements are illegal and says their future should be determined in peace talks with the Palestinians.

“We will promote building in all of Judea and Samaria, from the north to south, in small communities and in large ones,” Lieberman wrote, using the Biblical names for the West Bank.

There was no immediate comment from Palestinian officials, who have long argued that Israeli settlements could deny them a viable and contiguous country.

Some 500,000 Israelis live in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, areas that are also home to more than 2.6 million Palestinians.